Once you start setting your goals for the year, compare them to the checklist below to make sure they are SMARTIES.

SPECIFIC: Make goals as detailed and specific as possible. Don’t make broad wishy-washy goals like ‘I want to do better in Maths’, make them very detailed and specific. Exactly what do you want to achieve?

MEASUREABLE: You want to be able to know when you have achieved your goal so make sure there is some way to measure your success.

Action-Oriented: Your short-term goals should really be the action steps you need to take to achieve the medium and longer term goals.

(Another version of SMARTIES has Aspirational instead of action-oriented, i.e. your goals should inspire you and stretch and challenge you beyond your comfort level.)

Relevant & Realistic: Goals change, so if your goal is no longer relevant, you need to change it too. Although your goals should stretch you beyond your comfort zone, they need to be in some sense realistic. Create challenging goals by all means, but not totally unrealistic ones.

Time-Based: Your goals need to have a ‘to complete by’ date to give you something to aim for.

Interesting: Make your goals about things that you find interesting and worthwhile.

Emotional: Use powerful language to express the emotion behind the goals.

Success oriented: Express your goals in a positive and success focused way.