by Susan Crutcher

he New Year is a fabulous time to set our goals (business and personal) for the upcoming year. In fact, that will be the focus for December and into January.

Wouldn’t it be great to start the New Year off with a ‘bang’ – as in increased income and completed goals – immediately?

YES! Let’s get started!

No doubt you know that goals and goal setting are important. However, do you actually write your goals down somewhere? Do you follow up on them to check if they happened (often we forget what our goals were)? Do you take action toward your goals?  These few questions are very important and you need to have answers to them if you want to have a fulfilling life and successful business.

The majority of people have fuzzy, vague goals (if they have any at all) that drift in and out of their consciousness. They have no concrete plan; nothing written down. How could they possibly take action, know what to do next or remember where they are headed?

Your goals do not need to be huge. In fact, if they are, they tend to feel unreal and, therefore, unattainable. Your goals are much more likely to be achieved if you have a plan of action and a sequence of baby steps toward a larger goal.

OK. Time to actually do something!


Take a blank sheet of paper.
(1) Draw a vertical line down the center
(2) Draw another vertical line about ½” in from the right hand margin.
(3) Draw a horizontal line about 1” down from the top.
(4) LABEL the columns:


Write down ONE goal you want to achieve at some point in 2023.

Beside it, write down the actual date you want to have it accomplished by.

Leave room for a ‘check mark’ on the right side of the page to be filled in later.

Draw a horizontal line under this grouping. If you want, continue and write down another goal or two. Remember, at this point, to keep them fairly small. You may want to have a ‘master list’ where you keep your ‘big’ goals listed as a reference.


Every goal must be:

  • Specific
  • Measureable
  • Attainable
  • Realistic
  • Timely

An easy way to remember the 5 secrets is that the first letter of each word, when spelled out = SMART. If your goal is a SMART GOAL, it is much more likely to be achieved. You may or may not have heard of this ‘formula’ before – it is very common in the world of personal training. As a personal trainer, I wanted my clients to have a realistic goal that was achievable. Why? Because success inspires even greater success.

Example: A client is 150 pounds overweight and is attending an event in one month. She wants to ‘get in shape’ and lose all at least 100 pounds so she can wear a size 8 dress.

So, we take ourselves through the formula to determine whether or not this is a SMART goal:

Is the goal:

  • Specific            YES
  • Measurable    YES
  • Attainable      NO … not in the timeframe   YES … possibly, given enough time
  • Realistic          NO
  • Timely             YES

Because there are two ‘NO’ answers, this goal example is not SMART.

The next step is to rewrite or rework the goal so that it becomes SMART. Since it is reasonable to expect a loss of 2-3  lbs a week with a basic exercise and diet routine, the most the client should safely lose within 30 days would be 15 lbs (IF it happens to be a 5 week month!). So, it would be best to be honest with her regarding the reality of her goal; get her started on her routine (since it takes a minimum of 6 weeks and, most likely, 12 weeks for it to start becoming a part of her life) as soon as possible; and write down the baby action steps to her goal that will create successes she will be able to celebrate along her journey.

Take another look at the goal YOU wrote down.

Does it need to be reworked a little? If so, do that now. Rework it until it passes all the criteria with ‘yes’.


  • Start with a very small goal – this will help build success.
  • If your goal is unrealistic in one area only – break it down into smaller goals so that it is achievable.
  • Celebrate each and every success along your way.
  • Success breeds more success. Celebration, especially with supportive partner/coach/friend, works wonders in the achievement of your goals.
  • Get a coach. A coach is there to help you over the hurdles, pick you up when you fall down, there for you to lean on, and a supportive cheerleader in your successes.

I trust this information has been of help to you. For more about GOALS and GOAL SETTING, watch for next issue’s article. You are welcome to post questions, or email me directly.

If you’re ready for a coach, or simply want to find out more about coaching, contact me via email.
HEADS UP: In January and February, I am offering private coaching sessions where the investment will initially be at least HALF PRICE! Limited space available as my calendar is filling quickly. To get your name on the list NOW before the January issue, click here.