Setting goals

SMART Goals in a Pandemic

Having a vision is one thing, reaching it is another. A structured path towards our goals helps clarify our ideas, focus our efforts, and increase productivity. It’s often the difference between success or failure. This is where SMART goals can help. What does that mean? Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time specific. SMART goals are more likely to bring your dreams to reality. But how do we apply this model to our goals when the element of time is challenged? 

Specific

Keep it simple and keep it significant. Have a think about why this goal matters to
you, and what it will help you accomplish.

Measurable

Choose a way that will help you both evaluate your success and reassess your
set-backs. Remember nothing is set in stone and you can change your goals to suite your
environment as necessary.

Achievable

Make sure your goal is realistic to achieve. If you don’t think It is, this doesn’t
mean you need to change your goal, but you should reconsider the parameters around it. If
you aim for the trees and fail, you’ll land on the ground, but if you aim for the stars and fall,
you’ll land in the trees.

Relevant

Time for a reality check! Are you setting this goal for yourself, or for someone
else? Will you be able to receive the support you need to reach this goal?

Time specific

This is like your “due date” or “best-before label”. When is the deadline that
your goal needs to be achieved by? Does my goal even need a deadline?
The short answer is yes. Have a time-specific element to our goals stops us procrastinating and
allowing other things to distract us and become a new priority.

How can you set SMART goals during a pandemic?

In the current climate, setting a time-specific element to our goals is extremely challenging. There
are so many uncertainties and question marks that these alone can distract us from even starting to work towards a goal. But remember – you don’t have to be great to start, but you do have to start to be great! So here’s how you can do it!

Example: Return to AFL

Specific: I want to be fit enough that I can return to playing football for my local club. 

Measurable: I want to be able to run out a game for a full 4 quarters.

Achievable: The last time I played football was 1 year ago. I’ve had no injuries and have tried
to stay as strong as possible in the gym. This is achievable for me. I have access to the
environment and equipment that I need to achieve this.

Relevant: Returning to football will not only be great for my physical health but mental
health as well. I will have the support of my teammates and my club. They will help keep me
accountable for my actions.

Time-Bound: In normal circumstances, a time-specific goal for this may be to return to playing at the beginning of next season, or by a certain round.

However, during current COVID-19 restrictions this wouldn’t work. You can shift the focus to what you can do! What can you commit to doing in 6 weeks from now? What can you commit to doing in 1 week from now? What can you commit to doing today?

I will commit to at least 2 running sessions a week for the first 6 weeks before I re-evaluate my options.

Remember, being SMART is good, but being SMARTER is great. You can use your time-specific
element to set a timeframe for when you Evaluate and Review the progress of your goals.

If you need any help setting your goals or assessing any niggling injuries, consult with your Alpha Osteo or Physio in Newport to ensure your body is in good condition to start on your SMART goal journey!

Dr. Ashton Wilson, Osteopath
ALPHA Sports Medicine & Osteopathy

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