“The discipline of writing something down is the first step
toward making it happen.”
I just came across an interesting approach that has “author” written all over it. It’s a
goal-setting strategy called “SMART Goals” created by George Doran, a business psychologist. According to Doran, an effective goal has five elements. It is:
Specific: What are you trying to achieve? Not generally, but specifically. What’s the outcome you want? I want to become a best-selling author is vague. I want to complete my first novel for publication is more specific. I plan to write 1,000 words every weekday for the next three months is even more specific. You get the idea!
Measurable: How will you know if you’ve achieved what you’ve set out to do?
What criteria will you use to determine that you’ve been successful? What
milestones can you identify that will indicate you’re achieved the goal you’ve set?
Achievable: You should aim for a “stretch goal” — something that pulls you out of your comfort zone, but that you can actually accomplish if you make a strong commitment and invest full effort on a regular basis. Make it ambitious, but realistic and attainable.
Relevant: Make sure the goal you set for yourself really matters to you, so your commitment will be strong enough to withstand the distractions and discouragement you may face. Also be sure that you can directly affect the goal’s achievement through your sustained effort.
Time-bound: They say that a goal is a dream with a deadline. Setting a deadline will keep you focused and give you a sense of urgency. Make sure that you give yourself a time-frame that makes sense. This will help keep you on track and motivated.
There’s a site called OfficeArrow.com that has a simple goals template you can take a look at as well as helpful tips on goal-setting. Write on!