SMART Goals for the Holiday Season

SMART Goals for the Holiday Season
By KathyGates, RealLifeCoach

ISMART goals have been around a long time, and you'll probably see the acronym used in several different ways. I've always found that it's a good way to help remember what you're trying to accomplish, so try the SMART system to ease your holiday stress.

S - Specific: Make your goals for the holidays as specific as possible. How much money do you want to spend on gifts? Do you want to volunteer some time this year? What are you tired of doing and would rather delegate? Be sure to tell those who need to know of the specifics of your goals. Don't say "I want to spend less money this year", instead decide *exactly* what that means. "I want to spend a total of $xxx on gifts, with $xxx for immediate family, $xxx for .". You get the idea.

M - Motivational: What motive is behind your holiday work? Is it purely an expectation, or is it a time that you look forward to each year? Do you feel good about what happens during the holidays, do you get a sense of satisfaction? If not, look for what would make you feel good, and try to create a balance between what others expect of you and what's really important to you.

A - Achievable: Look for what's achievable. What can you realistically expect to accomplish? If money is tight this year, it's not realistic to go the cash route. If relationships are strained, it's not realistic to think that the holidays will heal all wounds. Don't try to overdo, and don't try to make things into something that isn't really there.

R -- Real To Me: Look for the real meaning of the holidays to you. The media hype tends to make us think that unless we have the perfect Norman Rockwell setting, with the perfect Brady Bunch family, we've failed. But it's about what's real to you. It may be religious, or it may not be. It may mean family and friendships, or it may mean vacation time for skiing in the mountains. Each person has their own interpretation of what the holidays mean to them. Be true to yours.

T - Trackable: All goals, even short term holiday ones, need to be trackable. You will need to record your success, and give yourself some credit instead of letting the nay-sayer in your head take control. Focus in on what you have done, not all that's left to be done. And give yourself some congratulations on a regular basis for doing the boring, everyday things (like making the bed, or cleaning the oven).


Professional Life Coach Kathy Gates helps people who are burned out, stressed out, and fed up to get back in touch with the foundations of their life.

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