Tip Tuesday: Goal Setting

Welcome back to campus! UR is buzzing already and it’s easy to get caught up in enjoying the first few weeks before the semester is in full swing. Before your schedule begins filling up with homework, meetings and social events, it’s important to take some time to map out goals for the semester.

The best way to achieve your goals is by strategizing how to get there. You wouldn’t go on a road trip without first looking at a map.

In order to best follow through with your goals think about the following:

1.      Are they SMART?
Goals should always be Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-Bound. Write out particular details for each one, this resource shares more about the meaning of this strategy.

2.      Visibility
Post them in a place where you will see them often. If you want to achieve them, they need to be a daily presence. Bonus points if you make a nice decorative display of your goals!

3.      Share Them
Think about your biggest accomplishments so far in life, did you get there alone? Most likely you had friends and family that supported you along the way. Share some of your goals with people you’re close with who will hold you accountable and encourage you when times get tough.

4.      Monthly Check In
The only way to see if you’re progressing is to stop and reflect. In your planner mark out a day at the end of each month to reflect on the progress you’ve made towards each goal and what you can do throughout the next month to work towards the finish line. Developing goals is great, but following through is even better!

5.      Don’t Stop
Once you reach your goals—don’t stop! If a goal is met early in the semester and there’s time and energy to begin something new, add it to the list. After you’ve met all of your goals it’s time to create a new batch to work towards.

It’s best to set different types of goals for yourself so you’re not working yourself too hard. For example, balance academic, personal and career related. Once you’ve set your goals look into what resources might help you along the way. Of course Career Services can help you with anything career related (jobs, internships, etc.), but there are plenty of offices on campus that offer services to help you achieve your dreams.

So sit down with a pen and paper and take some time to think about how you’re going to make Spring 2013 your best semester yet!


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