Setting Goals Jan. 4, 2019

Setting Goals

It’s a new year and a great time to create new goals. What do you want to accomplish this year? That’s a big question and answers can be quite varied. While some of you may be able to recite a list of things you want to accomplish without difficulty, other students may struggle with setting goals and don’t know where to begin.  First, you must consider what you want to achieve. Goals can be related to anything important to you: personal, financial, education, career, and etc.  Additionally, goals can be short-term or long-term.  Your short-term goal may be to get an A on your next big English test, whereas your long-term goal may be to take an AP class next year.  While some things happen upon chance, the best way to ensure to accomplish things you want in life, is to set goals. Goals give direction to your life and make you an active participant in it.  For you to truly work towards achieving goals, you need to take time to think about what’s important to you, focus your efforts, and make a plan. One of the greatest ways to achieve a goal is to make sure it’s a SMART Goal.


What do you want to accomplish? Be detailed and specific. Goals should be easy to understand.

- Not Specific: I want to earn good grades.
- Specific: I want to have a 95% in Algebra by June, 2019.


All goals should have a way to evaluate whether they were accomplished.

- Not Measurable: I want to run the mile, fast.

- Measurable: I want to improve my mile time by 30 seconds.



Goals must be something you can reach. Set a challenging goal but make sure it’s realistic.

- Not Achievable:  I want to learn to speak Spanish fluently by the end of the semester.

- Achievable: I want to learn 50 new Spanish words by the end of the semester.



Make goals that are important to you and what you’re trying to achieve.

- Not relevant: I want my mom to get a promotion at her job.

- Relevant: I want to work on my leadership skills, so I can run for class president next spring.



Make sure that you have a time set as a “deadline,” so your goal is not unending.

- Not timely: I want to learn to play the piano.

- Timely: I want to learn to play Happy Birthday on the piano, by March, 2019.


Tips to help achieve goals:

  • Write down your goals and look at them often.
  • If you achieved your goals too easily, make your next goals more challenging.
  • Share your goals with someone who can help hold you accountable.
  • If things don’t go according to plan, readjust! And, keep moving forward. Failing to meet your goals only matters if you don’t learn something from your mistakes.
  • Be positive and believe in yourself!
  • Remember that working towards accomplishing your goals is a valuable and meaningful way for you to:
    • evaluate what’s important to you
    • motivating yourself
    • build self-confidence

Start today – what do you want to accomplish? Make a short-term goal and a long-term goal. You can do it!