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Every year the same questions are asked of me and many of you as well

  • What are your New Year Resolutions for:
    • Personal
    • Business
    • Financial

Then at the end of the year we are asked a similar question

  • What were your highlights in these areas this year?
  • Did you achieve them?

Like you I ponder and declare something from the mind vault and get praised for my achievement.  Then the disappointment sets in as I recall what those resolutions I set were. Ops, I didn’t achieve everything I set out to do.

As it is now the beginning of the year there is time to determine a few new goals for this year.

Utilising the theory of S.M.A.R.T. goals it is a very simplistic tool that I find very practical.

S Specific:

Goals need to be specific. Not like “I want to be rich”, this is too vague.  The goal needs to be an actual amount of money.  Also share the goal with someone that you can trust and who will continue to encourage you along your journey.

M Measureable:

All goals need to be measurable so that you know if you have achieved them or not.  A financial goal needs to be a specific amount by a certain date, and if you review this regularly you can measure if you are on track or not.  Don’t forget to celebrate your journey milestones on the way. This will ensure your brain does not try to trick you with the negative things like, I knew this would not work.

A Achievable:

Consider how you will achieve the goals, consider all the options, what and how you will feel once you achieve these goals. Don’t stretch yourself too far as you can set yourself up for failure. Discuss your plan with a confidante and keep monitoring your progress. Evaluate if is it achievable in normal circumstances. Allow for the unexpected and external influences that may impede your plan.

R Realistic:

Realistic is that you need to be both willing and able.  If you set the goal too high or you don’t have the skill set to accomplish it, then you will feel like a failure.  Just as important, ensure the goal is not too easy as you will become complacent and the easiest of goals will underwhelm or devalue your achievement.  Break the task up into chunks and then you can determine if that task or goal is realistic.

Seek, strive and screen your progress to ensure that it is realistic and don’t be scared to modify the goal.

T Time Frame:

Time is the essence with any goal. You need deadlines for the different stages of the goal along with the completion of the goal.  Without any time frames there is only a slim chance of reaching your goal.

The five step processes are as important as each other. Ensure you give yourself enough time to complete the task, also consider the components that make up the goal.  An example here is I want to be wealthy but to get to those points you might need the following

The goal to achieve financial success for X figure

Step 1 Establish how much money you want.

Step 2 Have a due date and mark it off on your calendar.

Step 3 Work out income and expenses.  Develop a saving or investment plan.

Step 4 Consider all options to increase income and decrease expenses.

Step 5 Celebrate if you are successful, if not don’t quit. Review and redefine goals you have more experience and are likely to succeed this time around.

In conclusion consider and picture the goal, how you will achieve it, when by, what you need to do to accomplish it. Be mindful that you will have a few road blocks and you may need to rethink that goal to ensure that it will come to fruition. Share your goal and reward yourself when you complete the mini goal to achieve the larger one.

Good luck and be SMART with your goals in 2015

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