Ringing in the new year means a fresh start, and making New
Year’s resolutions is a great way to stay on track. When setting goals for the new
year, make sure they are SMART: specific, measureable, attainable, realistic
and timely. By creating SMART goals you are setting yourself up for success.
Making goals specific is important, because you need to know
exactly what you’re working toward. If your goal is “improve my GPA,” that
doesn’t give you an exact figure to achieve. Instead, try setting a goal with a
specific figure in mind, such as “achieve a 3.5 GPA.”
Often people set goals and forget to set a completion
deadline. Setting an end date for goals gives you an exact time frame in which
your goal needs to be completed. When setting the goal “achieve a 3.5 GPA,”
does that mean achieve a 3.5 GPA by graduation? Or by junior year? Putting a
time frame on your goal is necessary and helpful. Let’s revise the previous
goal by adding an end date: “achieve a 3.5 GPA by the end of the spring
Sometimes when setting goals people go overboard and try to
achieve impossible goals in a small amount of time. Making sure your goals are
attainable and realistic will help you stay on track. For example, raising your
GPA from a 2.0 to a 4.0 in a semester is unlikely. But achieving a 3.5 GPA for
the semester is attainable and realistic if you are determined.
Measuring your progress when setting and working toward
goals is crucial. If your goal is to have a 3.5 semester GPA, will you be able
to assess your progress midway through the semester? Having check-ins with
professors over the course of the semester can help you assess your progress
and make changes to your current work ethic if necessary.
A completed SMART goal should look something like this: “I
want to achieve a 3.5 GPA by the end of the spring semester. I will have three
grade check-ups with professors to make sure I am on track to achieve my goal.
My goal is realistic if I work hard and dedicate myself to my academics.”
Setting goals is a fantastic way to start off the semester. Chapter
officers and councils are currently working hard to set goals for the upcoming calendar
year. Sorority women who hold officer positions have transition meetings with
incoming officers to help them prepare for the upcoming year as well as set
goals. By using the SMART goal method, sorority women are setting themselves up
Setting goals helps you succeed personally and academically.
So what are you waiting for? Set some goals!