Let’s make like a phoenix and rise from the ashes stronger than ever when this is all said and done.

These are certainly trying times for many of us.

If you have a goal that feels just out of reach, it may be because it was not defined in the SMART goal format. When the coiner of this term was asked, “How do you write meaningful objectives?”, he replied matter-of-factly, “Frame a statement of results to be achieved.”

Following the SMART acronym is a tried-and-true checklist to make sure your goals are important and realistic:

S – Specific (Specify the improvement you are targeting.)

M – Measurable (How would you know if you met the goal without knowing where the finish line is?)

A – Achievable (Goals should be challenging and realistic. Consider any constraints, including financial limitations.)

R – Relevant (Is this worth your valuable time? Perhaps it should be delegating elsewhere?)

T – Time-sensitive (Keep yourself on pace and break down your SMART goal by smaller achievements along the way.)


Now grab a pen and paper and write out your goal. Here’s my example:

“I want to be able to do 50 push-ups without a break in 30 days.”

Let’s see if it holds up to the SMART criteria… Are push-ups a specific exercise I want to target? Yes. Can I measure the number of push-ups performed each day? Yep. Is it realistic considering the amount I can do non-stop right now? Mhm. Is it worth my time to improve core strength and endurance? Definitely. Have I set a time frame by which my goal will be reached? Sure have.

This method of meeting objectives has been around for decades because it works and its universal to literally any goal, whether that be personal, financial, or professional. Here’s a handy cheat sheet that the Polaris team uses to keep our SMART goals on track.

Even the best of planners, savers, and responsible folks alike are succumbing to the stress of day-by-day uncertainty. One of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned in my relatively short lifespan, is that we are all be better off focusing on what we are able to control in our lives, rather than losing sleep over issues out of our control. News outlets, toilet paper hoarders, and COVID-19 itself will act independently regardless of how much of our own energy we are willing to contribute. (Outside of doing our part in social distancing, etc.) So, instead of feeding into it, I suggest seizing this opportunity to re-evaluate our current goals and adopt new objectives if you see fit.

Did this spark a fire inside you? Let us know on Facebook what SMART goals you are setting this month. We want you to motivate us, too!