Beginners Guide to Effectively Writing and Setting Smart Goals

SMART goals

As the year comes to an end, your thoughts are beginning to turn to your accomplishment for the year and what you want to achieve for the upcoming year. You probably started thinking about how great next year will be and how this time next year you will be a rock-star as you have completed all of your set goals. While we’ve all have tirelessly tried New Years Resolutions, statistics have shown nearly 80% of New Years Resolutions fail by February. According to, just 8 % of people actually achieve their New Year’s Resolution. That’s a pretty sad number if you think about it but we’re most have tried and failed won’t be your problem anymore. In this blog post, we will discuss effective ways to write and set goals. Note, this post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure for more info.
Research has proven that those who write down their goals have a significant more chance of actually accomplishing their goals than someone who does not write their goals down. While everyone’s advice is going to be different and you can scroll the internet to see the various ways people go about it. We want to provide you with basic primary goal settings principles that will allow you to set and accomplish each goal effectively. These are basic principles we even practice ourselves to set the tone not only for the new year but for overall success.
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Keep’em few in number

Studies have shown when focused is placed on detail instead of doing more, the chances of achieving your goals are higher. It is so easy to get distracted as our minds typically wander anywhere from 20 to 40 percent of the time. So to voluntarily keep our attention on one thing continuously can take a lot of effort, but by focusing on a handful of goals that you can repeat almost from memory increases your odds towards success.

Be honest

You want to be honest with yourself and make sure you are truly passionate about achieving the goals you’re setting. Instead of setting goals you think you should accomplish. To our success, it’s rather important to us that we set and achieve one goal that truly excites and inspires us than for us to set and achieve 10 goals that aren’t authentic and genuine to who we want to be or what we believe in. Make sure it’s a goal worth reaching and you are ready to make the necessary sacrifices to achieve them. Are you ready to give up lots of free time, family time, etc to reach that goal?  Want to be an entrepreneur?  Go talk to Entrepreneurs, read their books and then decide if the day-to-day hustle and grind is something you’d enjoy. The idea here is not to scare you off but to make sure you really care because passion will be one of the key ingredients towards your success.

Think BIG!

When setting goals don’t be afraid to think big, I was listening to a TD Jakes podcast and it said to dream big, don’t sell yourself short. One of the big mistakes young entrepreneur make are not dreaming big enough, now there is nothing wrong with being realistic but when you are setting goals, why not start by going after what you really want and then, if necessary, tweaking and making changes as you go. Hey, That’s life!  figuring it out as you go along but having a blueprint in place during the journey. It’s not surprising that many people struggle with this concept but there is a quote I heard Oprah say that has always resonated with me since the 1st time I heard it.

5 criteria for an effective goal

Make them “SMART”!

To make sure your smart goals are clear and reachable, each one should be:
  • Specific (simple, sensible, significant).
  • Measurable (meaningful, motivating).
  • Achievable (agreed, attainable).
  • Relevant (reasonable, realistic and resourced, results-based).
  • Time-bound (time-based, time-limited, time/cost limited, timely, time-sensitive).
Beginners Guide to Effectively Writing and Setting Smart Goals
Photo Cred: Medium


Your goal should be clear and must identify exactly what you want to accomplish in as many specific details as possible. Otherwise, you won’t be able to focus your efforts or feel motivated to achieve your goal. Questions to ask yourself.
  • What do I want to accomplish?
  • Why is this goal important?
  • Who is involved?
  • Where is it located?
  • Which resources or limits are involved?
Example: I want to write a book
Example: Using the “smart” criteria: I want to writes a book for low-income families on how they can create another stream of income using items they already have in their household.

2. Measurable

It’s important to have measurable goals so that you can track your progress and stay motivated. Assessing progress helps you to stay focused, meet your deadlines, and feel the excitement of getting closer to achieving your goal.
A measurable goal should address questions such as:
  • How much?
  • How many?
  • How will I know when it is accomplished?


You might measure your goal of writing your book by determining you have completed a certain amount of pages and have gained access to the relevant information needed to teach people how to have additional income.

3. Achievable

Your goal also needs to be realistic and attainable to be successful. In other words, it should stretch your abilities but still remain possible. When you set an achievable goal, you may be able to identify previously overlooked opportunities or resources that can bring you closer to it.
An achievable goal will usually answer questions such as:
  • How can I accomplish this goal?
  • How realistic is the goal, based on other constraints, such as financial factors?


You might need to ask yourself whether this book topic is relevant and realistic based on your research and existing experience,  developing the skills required to become head of marketing is realistic, based on your existing experience and qualifications. For example, do you have the time to complete the required training effectively? Are the necessary resources available? Can your readers afford to utilize them?


This step entails your understanding that your goals matter and why do they matter in order to ensure that they align with other relevant goals you want to accomplish. With some of your goals, you may realize you will need support and assistance to complete, however during that process don’t lose track of your own plans by taking ownership and responsibility for achieving your own goals.
Goals that are relevant you can answer “yes” to the following questions:
  • Does this seem worthwhile?
  • Is this the right time?
  • Does this match our audience needs?
  • Am I the right person to reach this goal?
  • Is it applicable to the today’s social market?


You might want to gain the expertise necessary to be considered a professional in your field, you need to ask yourself is it the right time to undertake the required training, or work toward additional qualifications? Are you sure that you’re the right person for the head of this role? Have you considered your families goals and how it will affect their well being.

5. Time-bound

Setting a target date for every goal amounts to your success.  Every goal needs an end date in order to set blueprint in place for achievement. Having a deadline allows you to focus on something and work hard towards meeting your goal. This part of the SMART goal principal helps to prevent everyday tasks from taking priority over your longer-term goals.
A time-bound goal will usually answer these questions:
  • When?
  • What can I do six months from now?
  • What can I do six weeks from now?
  • What can I do today?


Gaining the skills to teach others how to acquire multi-streams of income may require additional training or experience, as we mentioned earlier. How long will it take you to acquire these skills? Do you need further training, or access to resources so that you can create a complete picture of those reading your book? It’s important to give yourself a realistic time frame for accomplishing the smaller goals that are necessary to achieving your final objective by making sure it has a by when date.

Mark Your Calendar

Beginners Guide to Effectively Writing and Setting Smart Goals
2017-2018 Calander and Notebook for our goals
As you’re goal setting, start to think through the small tasks that add up to achieving your biggest dreams. As we mentioned earlier if you focus on the small goals the big goal won’t seem so daunting. If you want to get this book out by June start working backward on your calendar and start marking in milestones that will help you achieve your goal, such as interviews for the book, also marking off 30 to 60 minutes each day on your calendar for writing or research time.

Get Help

There are some great, inexpensive books and tools to help you with goal setting both large and small. Resources we can recommend are Your Best Year Yet: Ten Questions for Making the Next Twelve Months Your Most Successful Ever and an app (for Mac, iPhone, and iPad) called Things. You can also work on goal setting using professional services such as career coach. While no book or app or person can force you to achieve your goals, what these resources and people do is provide accountability to you in order to stay on track with your goals. When you submit to a formal, written goal setting process or ask someone to call you once a week to check on your progress, you’re more likely to stay on track. Too many of us rely on “positive-thinking” to launch our goals, but solid support and services is actually more of a boost.
So let’s break down what we’ve gone over regarding goals. Keep it short and simple, be honest with yourself and think big! Devise a plan for success and implement your goals using the SMART Goal Principles,
  • Be Specific
  • Make it Measurable
  • Be Actionable
  • Be Realistic
  • Allow for Time sensitivity.
Get help if you need it, use your resources and devise a weekly plan to conquer small goals. We hope you found this blog helpful, until next time Happy Reading!!

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Beginners Guide to Effectively Writing and Setting Smart Goals

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