Setting New Goals: Learning 5 Ways To Set Realistic Goals

Setting SMART goals
New goals are always motivating until we realize we can no longer achieve them.

New goals for the new year can be difficult to set for a variety of reasons.

Trying to make changes requires a lot more than simply setting new goals. It includes evaluating your situation and choosing a goal or set of goals you can achieve realistically.

This article (and video) will discuss how to set fair, reasonable, and easy to achieve goals.

Have you ever heard of SMART goals?

When I worked in a residential treatment facility with adolescents who struggled with traumatic backgrounds, part of my group therapy with them was to set SMART goals. SMART goals have a way of structuring your goal so that the chances of your succeeding are higher.

What are SMART goals?

SMART is an acronym for S (specific), M (measurable), A (achievable), R (realistic), and T (timely). I discuss more of this concept in the video below. A specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely goal would be:


S: “I would like to pass my upcoming exam.”

M: “I will check to see if I am on the right path by having my friends test me with flash cards.”

A: “I can achieve this as long as I study and give myself breaks throughout the week.”

R: “This goal is realistic because I have control over how much I study and what I study.”

T: “This goal is timely. I will study for 2 weeks before the exam.”


Setting S.M.A.R.T Goals


In addition, because a lot of people may find themselves feeling depressed after the holiday, I also discussed in this video is reaching out for therapy in the new year and what to look for. Seeing a good and caring therapist at the beginning of the year may be helpful. A good therapist can motivate you, help you set new goals, help you achieve them, help you re-organize your life and thoughts, help you prepare for major decisions you may have to make in the new year, etc. Having that added support can be beneficial.


Happy New Year