How to Set SMART Goals and Connect Them To Your Why

It’s year end of course we’re talking about goal setting!

Hey welcome back for another week of The Bootstrap Boutique where beginners build businesses.

This week, we’re going to talk about setting goals for 2017. And I get it, you’re like, “Megan there are like five million videos on YouTube about how to set goals,” but you haven’t watched mine yet, so just keep listening.

I have been doing some brain storming for what I want to get accomplished in 2017 and to do that I am using the very common method of setting SMART goals.  What are SMART goals? Well, I’m glad you asked. I’m sure you didn’t ask.

The word SMART is a way of making sure that you are setting goals that you can actually attain and that actually matter. So let’s break it down.

S is for Specific.

So your goal should not be next year I want to increase sales.  It should be next year I want to increase sales by five thousand dollars or by ten percent or whatever makes sense for you.

M is for Measurable.

Can you objectively measure that goal. So if you want to increase sales by five thousand dollars, thats a yes or no, that binary, you’re going to know if you hit it or not. You are also going to know how close you are to hitting it because five thousand is a hard number so when you’re at twenty five hundred dollars in excess sales, you know you’re halfway there.

A is for Actionable.

Your goal should be something that requires you to take action, not something that is passive.  If you’re increasing your sales next year by a specific dollar amount, you need to know, what kind of steps are you taking that is going to help you to actually hit that goal.

R is for realistic.

So if for my made up goal I want to increase sales by five thousand dollars, if I am in my current position where I have zero sales dollars for 2016 and next year I want to increase it by five thousand dollars, that’s a really big percentage change but its still realistic because its only five thousand dollars. If I said I want to go from zero to five hundred thousand dollars, is it doable? Yeah, maybe. But its not super realistic.

And T is for time based.

So in what time frame do I want to increase sales by five thousand dollars?  Do I want to do it in a month, in a quarter, in a year? That needs to be part of your goal.

Ok, now that we’ve got that all out of the way and hopefully are on the same page about what kind of goals we need to set for next year, I want to talk about something that I think is the most important that has nothing to do with the SMART acronym.

And that is your why.  All of the goals you set need to be tied into your big why.

Why do you do the things that you do?

Because if you’re goals are just to make a million dollars, but the reason why you are doing it is to spend more time with your family, but you’re not spending time with your family because you’re working all the time trying to make a million dollars, then you’re going to burn out on that and the million dollars is not going to make you happy because that is not what is motivating you, which is the spending time with your family.

So if your goals don’t make sense for your why its going to be extremely difficult to achieve them because working towards them is not whats filling you up internally and giving you motivation to keep working so hard day after day. And ultimately if those goals aren’t important to you, if they aren’t important to your big why, then you’re probably not going to achieve them.

So make sure as you’re reflecting over the next couple of weeks and you’re thinking about what you want to accomplish for next year, make sure its really tied into your why for why you do what you do.

I have decided to set quarterly goals instead of big annual goals, and for me that’s because I do have some big things that I want to accomplish next year but I wanted to break them down into smaller chunks so they feel more achievable. Also I think since this is my first year really working on those goals that having something smaller to aim at in a shorter time period will give me a sense of urgency because the time period is shorter but also a better sense of accomplishment because I should be able to get to Q1 and March 31 and say, “Yeah, I did those things.  Lets move on to the next.”

Oh and don’t worry, I’ll share all that in next weeks video.

The last thing that I wanted to say about goals is that I think the language that you use to make those goals is really important. And I really like what Stefan James of Project Life Mastery does.  He does a monthly update on all his goals and the language that he uses is so positive I think that it really helps him in fulfilling the things that he gets done every year.  If you go to Stefans blog which is projectlifemastery.com, and you read his monthly goal update reports, then you’ll notice that he uses language like, “I will easily…” So he might say I will easily grow my YouTube subscriber base by X or I will easily increase twitter followers by Y.

And at first I was like, why is he doing that? That sounds so cocky. But then I realized that there’s some interesting psychology going on there.

Because we do not do things that we think are going to be hard most of the time.  So if you are using your language to frame in your mind that something is going to be easy, then you’re going to do it and you’re probably going to exceed that goal. When you’re writing out your goals its important to say things like I have or  I will.  You don’t want to say I want to or I’m going to try to or things like that.  Because not to go Yoda on you but there is no try. You do it or you don’t do it.

So there’s my two cents on goal setting and I’d love to know your thoughts about SMART goals and you know, do you use them are you tired of hearing about them? Just tell me what your thoughts are down in the comments below.  Be sure to come back next week I will be sharing my goals for 2017 with you and I can’t wait for you to tell me about what you’re going to be working on in 2017 also. Don’t forget to subscribe to this channel if you haven’t already, we post new videos every Wednesday. And I will see you for the last time in 2016 OMG. Take care guys!

You can watch this video at The Bootstrap Boutique’s YouTube channel here.

You can watch The Bootstrap Boutique’s YouTube channel here.

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