How To Make S.M.A.R.T. Goals Part V – Time-Bound

The final element to creating a SMART Goal – Time-Bound.

Goals fuel success and this blog series is dedicated to providing you with the best opportunity to achieve those goals by making them S.M.A.R.T. SMART is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-Bound. These together create a goal that is carefully planned, clear, and trackable – all of which are needed to set yourself up for success.

S.M.A.R.T. Goals Part I, being specific creates a concrete missiocreates a mission statement tokeep focus and provide a finish line.
S.M.A.R.T. Goals Part II, uses measurable information to see, track, or follow a goal.
S.M.A.R.T. Goals Part III, fuels motivation by making sure the goal is Achievable.
S.M.A.R.T. Goals Part IV, establishes our ability to make it to the end.

The final key component of creating a successful goal is making it Time-Bound.

Answering “when?” is such an easy aspect of setting goals that can be overlooked. Creating a deadline or a target date is the last step in establishing a finish line. “My goal is to run a mile in under seven minutes… by the end of the month.”
By establishing a deadline, you can also create mile markers along the way. If it’s a large goal, like playing soccer in college but you’re a freshman in high school, break it into smaller pieces. Make the high school team freshman year. Make varsity by sophomore year. Become a starter junior year. Earn the captain’s spot senior year. And so on.
These time constraints also create a sense of urgency. Motivation to work through the days that feel like more of a grind. The journey to our goals isn’t always easy, so giving yourself the tools when the times get hard will help you through.
Now that you have all five elements of a SMART Goal, use them for all the things you want to accomplish. Here’s an example:
Specific = I need to buy a new pair of cleats before preseason starts.
Measurable = I plan to spend $150.
Achievable = I will save $50 every month.
Realistic = I can afford this with my summer job. I want the cleats sooner, but I can’t save more than this right now.
Time-Bound = By saving $50 a month, I can get my new cleats in three months, in time for pre-season to start.
S.M.A.R.T. Goals are designed to help determine what you want and how to get it. Remember, life happens. When things change, stay on top of your goals. Monitor them closely and make the necessary adjustments to help your goals a reality. For more information on how to make S.M.A.R.T. goals, check out the rest of the series here:

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