One acronym you may be familiar with when it comes to goal-setting is the SMART goal formula. It goes as follows:
Specific – your goals must be specific; you must describe your goal in such detail that an outsider who has no knowledge of your goal would know exactly what it was that you wanted with no chance of misunderstanding
Measurable – the completion of your goals must be measurable; this is the ‘When’; by when will your goal be completed? Make it specific; i.e. 6:00 PM, Monday May 31, 2011
Action-oriented – you must be able to take action on your goal and you must take some action immediately after setting your goal to begin to create momentum; nothing really happens until you take action!
Relevant – goals must be related to your purpose and vision; being clear about your purpose and holding your vision clearly in your mind, your goals must be relevant to this vision
Timely – related to ‘measurable’, your goals must move you closer to the completion of your vision; be sure to chunk your goals down into steps you can complete in a short period of time so you are making regular progress toward the completion of one of your larger goals