Associate Level Material Appendix B Goal Setting

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Associate Level Material

Appendix B

Goal Setting

Defining Goals

Goals are outcomes or results an individual wants to achieve in a stated period of time. Goals require prioritized steps for successful achievement and must align with an individual’s priorities. Misaligned goals often lead to unfulfilled outcomes. Putting goals into writing and reviewing them daily allows the goal setter to more effectively visualize the accomplishment of the goal.

Goals can be set in various areas of life, such as career, personal development, family, friends, finances, health and wellness, leisure time, physical environment, and spirituality. Goals can also span a variety of time periods. Some goals can be long-term: 3 to 5 or more years. Others are midterm: 1 to 3 years. Still others are more immediate and short-term: 1 to 12 months.

Benefits of Goal Setting

Creating goals provides structure and purpose for personal, academic, and professional activities. Individuals who use effective goal-setting strategies report that they experience less stress and anxiety, concentrate better, perform better, and are more satisfied in their work and personal lives.

SMART Goals

For goals to be effective, they must include action words that explicitly describe the desired outcome. Effective goals also include the following SMART elements:

• Specific: Specify, in detail, exactly what is to be accomplished. Vague goals do not provide enough structure for achievement. In addition, it is difficult to determine when an overgeneralized goal has been accomplished.

• Measurable: Measurable goals indicate how much progress has been made toward achievement. If a goal is difficult to measure, it may be difficult to achieve.

• Attainable: Goals must be attainable. Not everyone can play for the National Football League, but there are many related, achievable goals. Set…...

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