Thursday, May 27, 2010

S.M.A.R.T. Goals

I would have never believed you if you told me last week that I was going to start a blog. Truth of the matter is, this is one of the more spontaneous endeavors.

To make a long story short, it all started because a friend started a blog on food and healthy living. I pulled up her page once, clicked on her blog roller and was addicted.

Now I did spend a good couple of days throwing around ideas, but in the end I realized everything in my life focuses around the fact that I am a driven person. I am constantly setting goals for myself, from my budget, to my workouts, to my eating habits and even to my professional life. Occasionally, I even TRY to set goals for others, which is a BAD idea.

The main reason I love goals is they are S.M.A.R.T., which brings me to one of my favorite acronyms...
  • Specific - Goals are much more likely to be achieved if you have specific parameters that you are looking to meet. This is the who, what, where, when and why of you goal.

  • Measurable - Can you see progress? Measurable goals should have a plan. Establish criteria to follow and try to stay on track.

  • Attainable - When you identify something that you want to do, you often figure out ways to accomplish it. Is this goal realistic in the sense that you could physically or financial complete it?

  • Realistic - Are you willing and able to work toward your goal? This is my favorite as everyone tries to bite off more than they can chew. Set a goal you know you could accomplish and slowly work towards your more lofty aspirations.

  • Timely - Ground your goals into a specific time frame.

So, let's begin with the goals!

One goal or life experience that has always been in the back of my mind is to go backpacking. Well, this weekend I finally have that opportunity! My mom is an avid day hiker. Her and her friend, Mrs. Carol, want to hike the entire Appalachian Trail. Originally the goal was to hike the entire trail one day at a time on various weekends. But, as they approach their mid 50's, they have realized that this is a lofty goal. Now, in order to reach their goal, they have taken on a new adventure, back packing, bringing us to this weekend.

This adventure will be the first for all of us. Thankfully, they have done their research as myself and Mrs. Carol's son are along for the ride... or I guess hike would be more appropriate. Tomorrow morning at some ungodly hour I will be in a car, with my coffee in hand, headed to the trail somewhere near Swatara State Park, PA.

Lots of pictures and stories to come Sunday or Monday. Wish me luck as it is supposed to rain!