That’s: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Reasonable, Time-oriented.
Many of us experience what we think is procrastination with our goal-setting. We might go so far as to schedule time in our calendar to spend time working on that goal, we might be excited about the results we hope the goal will bring us, but somehow, we never seem to be able to get started with the task, we put it off, we find something else to do instead, and the goal remains just that – something big and ominous and looming somewhere in the distance.
In reality, it often isn’t procrastination that gets in the way of tackling our goals. It’s more that our goals are not SMART (specific, measureable, achievable, reasonable, time-oriented). If your goal is too big, too general, too unfocused, then it’s difficult – perhaps impossible – to go about tackling it. In order to really get to work on something, we need to know the components, the strategy, the desired outcome. We need to break it down into many small parts.
For example, I have an agent who is motivated to work on his business prospecting to build his client list. He recognizes the value of this goal, he knows that it is likely to produce successful outcomes for him, he even schedules time each week in his calendar to work on this particular goal. But, somehow, each week when that scheduled time comes around, the goal isn’t tackled, something gets in the way. And then he is frustrated that once more week has passed and nothing has been done towards this goal.
I helped this agent recognize that his goal was too broad, too general, and that this is what was getting in his way of working on it. We broke the goal down into smaller, more concrete and specific components by addressing a few questions:
- Who do you want to prospect to? How will you contact them?
- What is the outcome you are looking for? What is the message you want to send them?
- What will you say to achieve that outcome?
- When will you contact these people?
- How many people will you contact during each scheduled “prospecting” time?
A good coach can help you shift perspective on your goals and help you tackle them step by step. To get started, try asking yourself this question: “What’s the first step I can take towards this goal?”