An endless to-do list, overwhelm, missing the forest for the trees. It happens to all of us, especially now when we are bombarded daily with content from all sides. Do this- then do that, follow this framework, watch this course and start doing that. You keep adding tasks to your list, but the list doesn’t seem to get smaller, instead of bigger and you barely see progress in your work.
I have developed a simple goal setting structure which works wonders, and it will help you too to reach your goals if you follow the instructions correctly.
- The SSM Goal Setting Method stands for Smart, Structured and Motivational.
The first S stands for SMART. I am sure you have all heard about this method. The SMART goal method stands for: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant & Timely. Let’s break it down bit by bit.
A specific goal needs to be well defined, clear & unambiguous. A right example of this could be: I will replace drinking soda with drinking water. The goal is NOT specific if you would just write down “I want to be healthier”.
A measurable goal means naming a specific criteria which will measure your progress towards the accomplishment of the goal. A good example of this could be: “I will lose 2 KG”. The goal is NOT measurable if you write down “I will lose weight until I fit into my pants”.
An achievable goal means it’s attainable and not impossible. Yet it should challenge you to push you a little bit out of your comfort zone as that is where the magic happens. An achievable goal could be “I will lose 1 KG per week” versus a non-achievable goal would be ‘I will lose 10KG per week”.
Setting a relevant goal means we need to revise and really think about if this goal fits into our overall life vision and purpose. Does it fit into our overall plan, does it make sense right now to set this goal? An example of a non-relevant goal could be “I want to learn Spanish right now” but I don’t know anyone in Spain, I don’t want to visit Spain and I don’t have any friends who are Spanish. A more relevant goal could be “I want to increase our company’s revenue by 100% in 2022.”
Setting a timely goal is vital for achieving your goals. If you don’t set a deadline to it- your project will most likely never be finished, your goal will never be reached. You need to communicate an end date to your brain so it can start working towards it. With a clearly defined timeline including a starting date and target date, you will be able to reach your goal. The purpose here is to create urgency. This deadline also needs to be very specific. A non-acceptable timely goal would be “I will start in June and finish in winter”. The right timely set goal could be “I will start on the 22nd of January and I will finish by May the 6th of the same year”.
Let’s recap what we have learned so far. A SMART goal stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Timely.
- Let’s move on to the second ‘S’ of the SSM Goal Setting Method, which stands for ‘structured’.
Let’s say our goal we have set to ourselves is ‘I will lose 1 KG this week, starting Monday, finishing Friday’ (it’s specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and timely).
Ask yourself which 3 action steps are you taking to reach your goal? Here is an example:
Action step number 1: I go for a daily run and do 200 pushups daily.
Action step number 2: I cut carps after 2 pm.
Action step number 3: I drink 3 litres of water daily.
- Let’s pick apart the last part, the ‘M’ which stands for ‘motivational’.
Here, I want you to think about three things: Firstly, think about the negative and the positive outcome of when achieving or not achieving your goal. What is the negative outcome if you don’t follow through and slack off? What is the positive outcome for you if you follow through with your goal?
Thirdly, think about a reward you would like to give to yourself if you reach your goal.
As yourself what is one thing you would buy for someone else, but not for yourself? Often we are really good at giving away to other people but we miss out on rewarding ourselves for our achievements. No matter if small or big. It’s super important to do so as you will on a subconscious level encourage your brain to be excited to start a new goal.
Here is an example of each of the 3 components of the motivational factor:
My positive outcome: If we hit the sales target, I will get a pay rise and can pay my mother’s hospital bills.
My negative outcome: If we don’t hit the target I am not able to pay the bills and the disease may kill her.
My reward: I will celebrate my win with spending an entire day at the spa with my mother, we’ll get a 3-hour massage, get our nails done and have an awesome vegan 5* meal afterwards.
This was it – this is my SSM goal-setting method. Now go ahead and set some SSM goals for yourself and see your life and business change in no time!
Bonus tip: It’s good to track your goals on an Excel sheet so you can always look back on your wins/failures to identify what you need to work on. You can revise after you have reached (or not reached) you goal and find out the reason why you have, or why you haven’t. This gives you a great hint on where to dig deeper and which area of your life you should focus on in order to resolve this.
What’s your goal for the week? Share it with us below!
Commentary by Tina Dahmen. Here’s what you’ve missed?
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