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Naomi ColmanStudent Ambassador
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Setting and Attaining Goals

November 9, 2016

“A dream written down with a date becomes a goal. A goal broken down into steps becomes a plan. A plan backed by action makes your dreams come true.” Greg S. Reid 

Goal setting is a very important aspect of a successful life, but sometimes setting goals can seem like a big ordeal.  In order to make goal setting much easier it helps to follow the S.M.A.R.T goals guide.  I first learned about this principle when I was a sophomore in my first management business class here at CMU and it has helped me ever since.

The letter S stands for Specific, in this case you should set goals that pinpoint exactly what needs to be accomplished.  In addition, you must include specific details pertaining to the individuals who will be involved in attaining this goal and where it will take place.

The letter M stands for Measurable. Ask yourself how will you know you’ve succeeded?  How much change would you like to see occur?  How many steps or actions will it take to achieve what you’re aiming for?  If you’re not able to measure your goal you might find yourself discouraged and feel like you’re not moving forward. Simple ways of measurement can lead to excitement when you see successes.

The next letter A stands for Attainable, when setting goals, you have to be realistic in creating steps to attain your goal. Consider what you need to reach the goal and if that goal is reasonable. For example, you do not want to have a goal that is excessively difficult or easy. While writing the steps to achieve a goal you may realize you do not have the resources to attain it.  Laying this groundwork will help you to succeed in the long run.

Moving on and looking at the letter R, the goals we are setting need to be Relevant.  It should be something that is worthwhile for you right now or in the near future.  In addition, this goal should help you achieve future goals.

The last letter to consider is the T, this letter stands for Timely, because the goal should have a deadline as well as an action plan.  Another important element in this section is to identify different tasks you can do at different times.  If you can do something to achieve the goal today do it and if you can do something to help achieve that goal in the near future write it down.

If your goals are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and timely you are bound to see success. Goals are there to motivate you to pursue greatness so do not become overwhelmed if you are not seeing success, instead consider re-evaluating your goals. 

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