How to Set S.M.A.R.T. Goals
Whether you are setting goals for your family, for work or your own personal growth, going about it the right way is essential to completing your goals. The most effective way to accomplish a goal is to be S.M.A.R.T. about it. We need to set goals that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound. But before we jump into setting S.M.A.R.T. goals, let’s see what the Word of God says about it.
- Commit your works to the Lord, and your thoughts will be established. – Proverbs 16:3 (NKJV)
- For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts. – Isaiah 55:9 (NKJV)
- But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.- Matthew 6:33 (NJKV)
Did you notice a trend here? As believers, we must include God in our plans. What we see from these scriptures is that God cares about our success. But before we start to map out the blueprint and check off the list, we need to invite Him into what we are doing, otherwise, our hard work will solely be from the labor of our own hands. We want our goals to be in line with what God has planned for us. Start by humbly seeking the Lord in prayer, invite the wisdom of the Holy Spirit into your goal setting, and submit your goals to the Lord.
Now let’s start planning. Remember, a S.M.A.R.T. goal is one that is Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound.
Specific (simple, sensible, significant)
Be simple, clear and specific in what it is you want to accomplish. This should answer the ‘W’ questions: Who, What, When, Where, Why and Which.
Who needs to be involved or who will it benefit? What specifically do you want to accomplish? When do you want to accomplish this by? Where does this need to take place (if relevant)? Why does this need to happen? Which resources are needed?
Measurable (meaningful, motivating)
How will you measure the progress of your goals? Set some short and long-term goals. This helps to identify tangible progress and allows you the space to adjust along the way. This will also give you an idea of how close you are to meeting your timeline.
Achievable (agreed, attainable)
Do you currently have the skills and tools necessary to achieve this goal? Or will you need to acquire them before starting? The goal should be challenging, but it should not be something that is unattainable. You should feel motivated and inspired, not depleted and discouraged by your goal. So be realistic and plan accordingly.
Relevant (reasonable, realistic, resourced, results-based)
The goal should be relevant to you and those that are involved. And it should be able to move things forward in a positive way. Answer these questions about the goal:
- Is it worthwhile?
- Is it applicable?
- Am I the right person?
- Is now the right time?
- Does this line up with the Word of God?
“A goal is a dream with a deadline” ~Napoleon Hill
Timelines will help you to stay on task. And deadlines will help to create a sense of urgency. A little tension produces a reachable outcome. But be realistic when setting the goal. Make sure the goal can actually be achieved in the timeframe that has been set, and consider all of the other components of S.MA.R.T.
Using the S.M.A.R.T. tool is an effective way to plan your goals. It’s also applicable to many different types of goals. When it comes to accomplishing and succeeding in your goals, remember to be S.M.A.R.T. about it.
Example of a S.M.A.R.T. goal plan:
I want to financially support the Faith Christian Center, Cross The Street (CTS) building campaign. My goal is to commit to $2000 by the end of the year. Specific
There are 3 months left in this year. October, November, December. Measurable
My friend has been telling me how much money he’s been making driving Lyft/Uber and Uber Eats. I can drive on the weekends in the evening to come up with the extra money. I just took my car in for an oil change and tire rotation. And the mechanic said that its running like a dream. Achievable
I really believe in what FCC is doing and my life has been changed since I walked through the doors. I want to give back. I want to bless my church family because I have been blessed by what God is doing through FCC. Relevant
It breaks down to $690 per month for 3 months or $172 per week for 3 months ($2070). I can do that! Time-bound
S – Support CTS
M – $2000 in 3 months
A – Lyft/Uber, the car is in good shape
R- I love what God is doing through FCC
T – Make $172 on weekends/nights