The Multipassionate

How to make ‘feeling goals’ SMART? (+ Free project management template)

One of my goals this year is to improve my confidence as a coach. Now I like to make my goals SMART:

S = Specific (What exactly are you going to achieve?)

M = Measurable (How much or how many of something counts as a success?)

A = Attainable (Is it realistic in the given time frame)

R = Relevant (Is it in line with your larger (life) vision)

T = Time-bound (By when? Give it a deadline)

For goals that are easy to quantify this is not too hard to do:

‘Run my first marathon by June 2023’

‘Hitting my first 10k month by December 2022’

‘Completing a 200-hour yoga teacher training by the end of this year.’

Throughout the last years, I noticed that most of the things I actually want from life are hard to put into a quantifiable goal. They are not external things, but feelings.

  • Good health
  • High energy levels
  • Confidence
  • Etc.

Now, how do make a goal specific and measurable when you’re talking about feelings?

The reason you want to make a goal measurable and specific is so that by the end of the time period, you know if you succeeded or not.

Did I become more confident? Do I have more energy now? Do I feel happy?

There are 2 ways to do this:

1. Quantify the feeling you want to have on a scale from 1-10 so you can track progress over a set period

Say that you want to feel more energetic. You can track your daily energy levels from 1-10 in a habit tracker, and set a goal to attain a certain average monthly energy level by the end of the goal period.

The difficulty here lies in the fact that your reference point changes when you track feelings over a longer period of time.

For example, when you get used to having higher energy levels at the end of the year, you would still rate a bad day a 4 out of 10, while this might have been a pretty good day when your energy levels were generally lower. For this method, I would recommend using a shorter time frame to track your progress.

2. Define success by completing specific projects

Lately, I prefer to use this method: Focusing on specific & measurable projects that help achieve this goal, and journal about your progress at the start and at the end of the goal period.

The reason everyone always talks about SMART goal setting is that you want to define what success means to you. If you can’t make a feeling goal quantifiable, it means you have to figure out what will make you feel successful, even if it’s unclear how much better/healthier/more confident you feel.

Say that you want to feel healthier. You probably know that eating healthy meals, working out, and skipping alcohol will make you feel healthy very quickly, even when the physical benefits might not even be there yet.

So what you want to do is choose a few specific, quantifiable projects, or mini-goals that you think will help you achieve this feeling goal in the most efficient way possible.

For example:

  • Working with a personal trainer for 3 months 3 times a week
  • Implementing a plant-based diet by [date]
  • No alcohol on weekdays for the next 6 months

In this example, the success of these projects is easy to measure. When the projects are finished, you can journal about your progress and review if you think you’ve achieved this goal or not.

I bet that you will feel healthier after completing these 3 projects, or ‘mini-goals’.

In the end, I believe your goals are just a reference point, ‘a measuring stick’ to see how you’re doing… The real work and action is in your projects, so make sure you’re choosing the right ones 😉

I created a free Notion Template to help you plan out your projects and break them down into small & simple steps. You can download it here👇

Download your project management template

Break your goals down into specific, quantifiable projects and track your progress with this project management template in Notion.

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