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Setting Smart Goals: How to Stay Motivated

Setting Smart Goals: How to Stay Motivated

This year, many people have experienced increased work from home and long periods of social distancing that have impacted daily life, routines, and plans for the future. Having a roadmap for the future is a key element to well-being and success. Setting and working to achieve goals as part of that roadmap helps people feel happier and more accomplished. Goals also provide focus as well as a measuring tool for progress. They enhance productivity, bolster self-esteem and increase commitment, so you are more likely to achieve whatever you set out to conquer.

Motivation is essential to setting and attaining goals. Research indicates that you can influence your own levels of motivation and self-control by determining what you want, powering through challenges, and envisioning yourself succeeding. Here are some tips on how to set goals and how to keep yourself on track to successfully achieve them:

Set Smart Goals

  • Put your goals in writing. Be specific, use action verbs, have measurable outcomes, and specify completion dates.
  • Make a list of obstacles. Think of everything that might stand in your way and plan for how you will stay focused when these distractions and temptations to stray from your path arise.
  • List the benefits of achieving your goal. Think about why your goals are important and what you hope to gain by achieving them.
  • Break your goals into smaller steps. Set sub-goals and define exactly what you are going to do and when. Make sure each step is attainable.
  • Have a backup plan. Leave some room for mistakes and have strategies in place to get you back on track if you fall short due to unforeseen circumstances or a temporary lapse in motivation.

Accountability and Rewarding Hard Work

  • Chart your progress. Whether with a high-tech online tracker or an old-fashioned fitness journal, seeing incremental improvements can boost your motivation and help you make important changes in order to be successful.
  • Enlist others for help. Find someone who has the same goal and hold each other accountable. If you know someone who has already achieved similar goals, ask them for insight on how to accomplish them.
  • Reward yourself. Treat yourself to a reward for every successful step you take toward achieving your goal. Choose rewards that will motivate you to continue moving forward.

Your Employee Assistance Program is Here to Help

To learn more about making life changes, setting goals, and how staying motivated, contact your Employee Assistance Program for free and confidential support, resources, and information. Help is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

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