Your S.M.A.R.T. 2013
That’s what happens when you Google “New Year Resolutions.” And, the results not only deliver the top resolutions, but most importantly, the reason they fail. So, while everyone is writing about them, and everyone searching for the reasons resolutions fail, I just wanted to share my approach to 2013 resolutions. Hopefully, it will help you.
Late December. In the car. At a stop light. That’s when I started to think about my list. I was listening to a lecture from iTunes U about goals. I was reminded of a very simple tool to use when considering my new year goals. Assign some structure to them so that you can make them happen.
The SMART mnemonic system is nothing new. It’s all over the internet. But, helps me filter out the realistic goals from the ha, that will never happen.
Specific – Goal: Get Organized. That’s not very specific. Shift it to Organize my paper files. Shift that to All files be stored electronically in 2013.
Measurable – Your goal has to be measurable so that you know you are making progress. Progress is your reward. In order to measure my progress, I will measure the reduction of paper files. If all goes according to plan, my filing cabinet will not be full. Rather, it will get lighter. No papers laying around or overflowing from the filing cabinet.
Attainable – is this goal realistic? Yes. I answer that by asking how I will achieve this. I have a scanner. I’m able to set up files on my computer.
Relevant – I ask myself ” does this goal matter?” Yes, this goal aligns to my overall desire to have a clean, uncluttered environment. And a less hectic life. It’s really worthwhile when it comes to tax season. I will be able to pull electronic files and send PDFs to CPA. We recently refinanced our mortgage and the bank wanted everything electronically. I wished I had this system already in place when we refinanced.
Time-bound- I need a deadline to keep me on track! If I didn’t have a deadline, it wouldn’t get done. January (1st week), I set up electronic files. Weekly I scan all docs and file. Wait, “weekly” is not very specific. Every Saturday morning I will spend 1/2 hour, I will pay bills, scan and file. Hopefully before the kids wake up.
With this system, I’ve made my vague goal of getting organized more specific by making it SMART.
Try it. If you can’t apply the SMART system to your goal, don’t feel bad about tossing it aside. Step in to something else to make it a better 2013.
Happy New You.