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Be the Best ‘Me’ in 2023 With SMART Goals

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It’s that dreaded time again… Yep, it’s time to talk about goals and plans of action for the new year so we can all be the best “me” in 2023.

The month of January is always the perfect time to turn the page and begin a fresh new chapter by setting goals to follow, and ultimately, achieve throughout the next 12 months.

For some, that’s easier said, than done.

What we often don’t realize is that the dilemma isn’t that we aren’t capable of sticking to our new objectives. The problem is that we need to do a better job of setting intentions that are actionable and achievable.

Otherwise, it’s almost like setting yourself up to fall short or even altogether fail. This leads to the abandonment of any fresh ideas for 2023 before even making it to Valentine’s Day.

Instead of making impractical resolutions, why not establish desired, yet positive, practices that will make you feel proud and accomplished at the end of the year. And it’s a little easier than you think.

Ever heard of SMART goals?

SMART stands for specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely. It’s an acronym used in numerous business models and one that fitness professionals rely on to help clients set and reach doable achievements. It’s also perfect for fresh, new annual life goals.

Here’s how it works:

Reflect on all areas of your life to determine where you are and where you want to be in 12 months. Make it meaningful. If your goals have no significance or you choose too many—you’re unlikely to achieve any of them.

Next, write down your SMART goals for the areas in your life you are committed to changing, and use the SMART acronym for each one.

Make it SPECIFIC. Your goal should answer the questions of what you want to accomplish and why it is important to you.

Make it MEASURABLE and quantify your goal in a way you have control.

Make it ACHIEVABLE. Even the loftiest goal can be accomplished if it just starts with a single step.

Make it RELEVANT. Is this goal relevant in your life right now? Relevance is particularly important when setting professional goals.

Make it TIMELY. A time-bound goal means setting a specific deadline for each accomplishment, creating a sense of urgency and motivation.

Once you have those goals set, make them visual and public. Nothing is easier in the world of social media, but if you don’t want to toss your aspiring declarations on the internet, simply tell a friend or family member and consider a vision board. The trick is to make sure you have a form of accountability and a place to bounce ideas if your goal needs change. Remember to be flexible. Sometimes goals become outdated or unessential in six months. Ditch those and write new goals if it is relevant or see how you might tweak the other goals you’re already working on.

Now make some SMART goals and let 2023 be your best year yet.


Written by Cherie Ward

Cherie Ward is an award-winning Mississippi Gulf Coast journalist with decades of experience in writing and photography. She lives in Ocean Springs with her husband and has two adult children who also live on the Coast.

Connect with her by email at [email protected] with story ideas or find her @cherieward on Instagram. She would love to hear from you.


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