For anyone that knows me personally, you will agree that I’m a die hard fan of Star Wars. From the countless hours watching the films, to my collection of t-shirts and posters–I am just thankful my fiancee still thinks I’m cool.
In honor of the 40th anniversary of the release of Star Wars: A New Hope, I thought it may be appropriate to look into the future. In 40 years from today, when we are celebrating the 80th anniversary, where do you hope to be? What do you hope to have accomplished? The best way to get to where you want to go, is to set goals.
In one of my first classes of college, I learned an acronym that has shaped many of my thoughts. To ensure that you can accomplish your goals, they must be SMART. That is: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound. Here is another article that is simple and to the point. This isn’t anything new, but I think it’s critical to measure each goal against the criteria.
Let’s break it down and use a real life (sort of) example.
Most people–with the exception of Han Solo or Mace Windu–have considered taking steps to lose some weight or begin a fitness program, at some point of their life. Imagine you are a stormtrooper, stationed on a moon, with the sole task of guarding a shield generator. It’s quite lonely and oftentimes a boring job. Maybe you fall into the trap of just sitting around, eating cheeseballs and watching Netflix. You have just received notification that a new troop leader has just been appointed and will be coming to inspect your post in a month. I suppose this is when you regret binge watching Arrow, in preparation for the newest season to be released on Netflix.
Now what? Set a worthy goal and write it down: Lose weight. Sound simple? Break it down, and make sure it holds up against the SMART criteria.
- Specific: Is the goal clear and focused on what it is you need to accomplish?
- Measurable: Have you attached specific numbers with the goal?.
- Achievable: Is the goal realistic? Attainable?
- Relevant: Does the goal mean something to you?
- Time-bound: What is the target date?
Asking yourself these questions doesn’t necessarily have to complicate the goal or the process, but help you to know it’s effective. Perhaps a simple variation of your goal could be: I will lose 15 lbs in one month. If it’s done right, you won’t give anyone the excuse to start shooting blasters at you.
Setting goals will provide direction and focus in your life. I love this quote by Zig Ziglar, “a goal properly set is halfway reached.” I have found great success in implementing this practice in my personal life and in business dealings. Right now, I want you to think of an area of your life that could see some improvement, and set a goal. If it’s not too personal, share it below. I would love to hear your thoughts.
May the force be with you.