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Some Goals are Smarter than OthersGoals though, they say what they are going to do. They say, "I will lose sixty pounds this year." They say, "I will treat myself to one gourmet meal per quarter." They say, "I will save one thousand, three hundred, seventy-eight dollars."
I spent the time I gave myself in my last article doing almost anything I could that did not involve consciously deciding what I'm going to do during the year. This is not to say that I frittered the time away. I used it to see family, strengthen friendships, and prepare myself for the stress and terror of trying to plan The Future.
Because I am who I am, fighting stress meant research. (Know your enemy.) I came across an explanation of SMART Goals. I had heard about these at my day job, but never really paid them much mind. They sound so buzzword-esque that I just could not be bothered. (Buzzwords are phrases have either a shelf life that is so short they are essentially meaningless or become the butt of everyone's joke.)
I did a little reading and decided that I had been wrong: despite the name, this was worthwhile. SMART Goals are like regular goals, but with built in metrics, means, and reasons. SMART stands for
Were I to make my example about losing sixty pounds a SMART Goal, I would say, "To improve my overall health, and to ensure that I can outrun walkers in the event of a Zombie Apocalypse, I will lose sixty pounds during the course of this year by running twice a week and taking martial arts classes three times a week."
"To improve my overall health, and to ensure that I can outrun walkers in the event of a Zombie Apocalypse"
"lose sixty pounds"
This breaks out to a mere five pounds per month.
"To improve my overall health, and to ensure that I can outrun walkers in the event of a Zombie Apocalypse, I will lose sixty pounds"
"during the course of this year"
My (SMART) GoalsI am not going to reveal all my goals (a girl needs her secrets), but I would like to share some of them.
- Within the next year, learn at least three new survival skills that would aid me if I found myself stranded alone.
- To improve my overall health, and to ensure that I can outrun walkers in the event of a Zombie Apocalypse, I will lose sixty pounds during the course of this year by exercising at least four days per week for at least thirty minutes per session in conjunction with making healthy food choices.
- Write at least one fictional story per month.
- Complete and revise at least one fictional story per quarter so that it can be submitted for publication.
- Plan and execute a solo vacation (at least three days) during which I am beholden to no one except myself.
- Write like a mofo.
What are your goals? How will you improve your life this year? Tell us in the comments!
Follow me on Twitter: @Anypocalypse
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------Edited on 8/4/2015 to remove typos------