After recovering from the evening before everyone swears THIS is the day, they will start hitting the gym every day, eat more spinach, waste less time and become the “best version of themselves.”
I’m not big on New Year’s resolutions, but as a rising marketing communications professional, I think I have a good idea of how to set a goal. We have all studied the SMART method for writing marketing objectives, but how can this be applied to our New Year’s resolutions?
“I’m going to work out more,” that’s a great goal, but what does “more” mean. Make sure your goal is clear and outlines steps you will need to take to achieve it. If a goal is focused and specific, you are more likely to stay with it because you know what you need to do to reach it, there is a level of accountability to it.
Instead of “I’m going to go to the gym more,” try, “I am going to go to the gym three times a week.”
M – Measurable
By making your goal quantitative, you are more likely to achieve it because you can track your progress. Go a step further and set benchmarks, a measurable progress point you think you should make by a specific date to eventually hit your goal.
Instead of “I want to get better grades this semester,” try, “I want to get an A in all of my classes” and track your progress through the points you receive on each project.
A – Attainable
Setting goals that are way outside of realistic limits will ensure 2020 is anything but “your year.” Even unrealistic benchmarks can derail progress to an attainable goal so far that you actually go back even further from where you were you started. Make sure your goal is something you can achieve. By achieving one seemingly smaller goal, you can continue to set goals that motivate you to push harder when you reach them, now that you know success is possible.
Instead of “I’m going save enough money to retire by 35,” try, “I’m going to save an extra $50 a month,” more attainable and beneficial over time.
R – Relevant
T - Timely
Your goal should include a timeline to keep you on track. Avoid having a deadline that is so far in the future you overestimate the time you have to reach it or forget about it altogether. However, you also need to make sure you have enough time to keep goals “attainable.”
Instead of “I’m going to become an expert photographer in a year,” try, “I’m going to take a new photography course each month.”
There’s a lot you can accomplish in a year. Use your time wisely, prioritize your goals, and stick to them. Who knows, 2020 could be “your year.”
Emily Zekonis ( @EmilyZekonis) is a first-year graduate student studying Integrated Marketing Communications with an Area of Emphasis in Management. She is from the Philadelphia area of Pennsylvania and holds a B.S.J. in Strategic Communications with an area of emphasis in Public Relations from West Virginia University. Follow along with her graduate adventures on the Marketing Communications Today Blog.
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