SMART Goals for 2015 (pencils required!)

Welcome to 2015! We at Release Physical Therapy hope you had a wonderful holiday season and are excited to start the New Year! For many, each New Year is a time to not only reflect on the past 365 days, but also to create new goals for the year ahead.

There are brilliant folks all around the world studying the mental mechanics behind goal-setting, as well as the variables that affect if (and how) people achieve goals after mapping them out. Borrowing from both the business management and psychology worlds, we can all benefit from setting “SMART” goals in 2015.

“SMART” is an acronym for:

S: Specific – a specific goal will answer the questions when, what, where and why?

M: Measurable – how will you know you have accomplished your goal?

A: Achievable – not to be confused with “easy”… challenge is essential to make a goal worth working towards. Goals should, however, be things we have the attitude, skill and ability to achieve.

R: Realistic / Results-oriented – the goal is something that you are willing AND able to work towards. Running a marathon is a great goal, but not if you only have one hour a week to train.

T: Time-bound – when will you accomplish your goal? Simply setting a time and date for achieving a goal significantly increases your likelihood of success.

An example of a SMART 2015 fitness goal might be:

“I will run one 5K race each quarter, and one 10K race this year, lose 15 pounds and be able to ski on December 25, 2015.

This goal is specific, measurable (did you finish the races?), achievable if written by a beginner runner and time-bound. This type of goal is much more achievable than “I want to lose 15 pounds.”

So dig deep, dream big, and figure out what you really want to achieve in 2015. Goals should challenge you! Come with a plan, the first step of which is writing good (SMART) goals. To start, simply write down every goal that comes to mind. As they say, “passing from lips to pencil tips” has a power of its own, and is a great place to begin.

Stay healthy my friends,


Virginia Dula, DPT, OCS