Setting SMART Goals

When you’re ready to make a change, start by developing a small, doable goal. SMART Goals help you focus on one measurable goal, and build momentum towards your larger goals.

Set a SMART Goal!

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Realistic
  • Time-bound

Here’s an example of going from a general goal to a SMART goal:

  • I need to drink more water. I barely drink any now. I should be at 8 glasses a day.
  • SMART Goal: Drink four 8-oz glasses of water. Drink one every two hours beginning at 8 am, weekdays. Set reminders on phone to help stay on track.

Tips for developing SMART Goals

  • Focus on actions rather than results. Example: Add 1 cooked vegetable to every dinner. Not: Lose 2 pounds this week.
  • Discuss what would be a specific, realistic goal for the coming week that will get you closer to your long term goal.
  • Focus on building momentum rather than setting a difficult goal. You can always do more and exceed your goals!
  • Explore what else might need to change to help you meet your goals easily and more consistently. Example: Pack gym bag the night before to help get to the gym first thing in the morning.
  • Include as many details as seem helpful and comfortable.
  • If you start to feel resentment about a goal, back off and make the goal more realistic or more clear, or drop it for now. Switch your focus to another area and come back to this area later.

SMART Goal Sample Structures:

  • Walk ___ minutes daily for ___ days.
  • Do meal prep on _________ to make _______ for the upcoming week.
  • Pack lunch the night before at ___ pm for weekdays.
  • Add a salad to _______ (meal) on these days: ________________.
  • Log ___ meals for ____ days. Set reminders to help stay on track.
  • Bedtime 11 pm, Wake at 7 am on weekdays.