How To Set SMART Goals to Achieve Your Dreams (Plus SMART Goals Worksheet)

Stop Talking about Your Goals Like They’re Dreams…Make Them Come True By Setting SMART Goals Instead!

You’ve probably heard of SMART goals before…and that’s because it’s a formula that works.

Download the SMART Goals Worksheet to guide you through setting your own SMART Goals!

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According to a research study on goal setting by the Statistic Brain Research Institute, a staggering 92 percent of people that set New Year’s goals never actually achieve them. What a bummer!!!

Setting SMART Goals, in turn, provides a structure to self­-regulation by helping people to organize, prioritize and manage their motives (Affiliate Link – Shah & Kruglanski, Handbook of Motivation Science). They go on to describe detailed methods for structuring goals, which can be summarized for most of us within the SMART Goal Setting framework.

That’s some impressive science to back up goal setting! And yet it’s something we’re never taught exactly how to do. But the statistics don’t lie, and they make a strong argument for getting good at setting SMART goals and making a habit of it.


A 1953 Harvard Business Study, which may or may not be the result of internet lore, found that the 3% of graduates from their MBA who had their goals written down, ended up earning ten times as much as the other 97% put together, just ten years after graduation. Just another reason to get your SMART Goals Worksheet for free 🙂

SMART Goals Worksheet Free Download

Here’s an overview of setting SMART Goals:

SPECIFIC – Your goal needs to be written out precisely & you need to know the WHY behind your goal…some benefit or emotional attachment that will keep you focused.

For example, your goal might be to earn $1,000 per month through your side hustle to pay off all of your debt by the end of the year.

[clickToTweet tweet=”Use words that leave no doubt about what the goal is, why you want to achieve it, & how you will get there.” quote=”Use words that leave no doubt about what the goal is, why you want to achieve it, & how you will get there.”]

MEASURABLE – This is where your journal comes into play. It works like a report card and a method to measure what you want to accomplish and what you have actually accomplished. If your goal cannot be quantified, then you won’t know when you have succeeded!

An example of a measurable goal would be “I want to deposit an additional 100 dollars per week to our bank account. I’ll accomplish this by writing five 500-word articles each week for a life coach.”

ACTIONABLE / ACHIEVABLE – There are different things that “A” can stand for, but it’s usually actionable or achievable. In order to achieve anything, you must take action. So, make your goal actionable, where you do something each day that will eventually result in an accomplished goal.

Goals should also be achievable
or you will quickly get frustrated. Be accurate about the time it takes to reach a goal, and what actions it takes to get there. Also, if there is a delegated task, know who will be responsible for doing it.

REALISTIC / RELEVANT – “R” can stand for realistic or relevant, and both are important. If you want your goal to succeed, it should most certainly be realistic or you will fail.

If you’re currently making $500 a week and your goal is to increase that to $12,500 in 90 days, that’s not realistic. However, you may be able to increase it by $300.

Once you achieve that milestone goal and are earning $800 a week, you can set a new goal to increase your income by another $500 a week or something similar.

Your goal should also be relevant to your life’s vision and match your values. There’s no point in making or achieving goals that have no relevance to your long-term life goals. You could instead use that time to reach goals that get you one step closer to actually reaching your life goals. So always ask yourself if the goal is relevant to your life goals.

TIME BOUND / TIMELY / TRACKABLE – Various authors refer to the “T” in the SMART goal setting framework as time-bound, timely or trackable. All of these T’s are important parts of the goal creating and setting process. If you don’t set a time limit and you can’t track what is happening, your goal will be hard to quantify or show as achieved.

To help you work through creating and setting SMART goals, download the SMART Goals Worksheet below!


Quick Recap:

How do you set SMART Goals?

  1. Goals should be Specific
  2. Goals should be Measurable
  3. Goals should be Actionable/ Achievable
  4. Goals should be Realistic/ Relevant
  5. Goals should be Timebound/ Timely/ Trackable

I can’t wait to hear about your success at setting effective goals for yourself using the SMART Goals Worksheet!


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