Goals can be general or specific. Specific goals (or SMART lifestyle goals) are action plans which help move you toward a more general goal.
Specific – Specific goals have a greater chance of being achieved than general goals.
To set a specific goal, you must answer the 6 Ws:
- Who: The people involved.
- What: Choose the accomplishment.
- Where: Identify a location.
- When: Establish a time frame.
- Which: Identify needs and constraints.
- Why: Reasons for – or benefits of – accomplishing the goal.
Measurable – To determine if your goal is measurable, ask questions such as:
- How much?
- How many?
- How will I know when it is accomplished?
Attainable – When you identify goals that are most important to you, you begin to figure out ways you can make them come true. You develop the attitudes, abilities, skills and financial capacity to reach them.
Realistic – To be realistic, a goal must be something that you are both willing and able to work for.
A goal is probably realistic if you truly believe that it can be accomplished.
Time bound – A goal must have a target date.
Goal setting should be collaborative, meaning you should work with your healthcare team.
Together you can create realistic, health-related goals that you can achieve and that will help you improve your health.