SMART baby steps

PTSD is a monster to live with.  My attempts to remove it from my life is less than what I would like it to be.  I learned the hard way trying to eradicate it from my life in all one go is not going to happen right now.  I set myself up to fail setting humongous impossible goals.  I learned about babysteps from  I learned about simple changes before Flylady.  Her words resonated because I already had a fairly good idea that I needed small changes.  What I didn’t understand until I was in counseling that I was programmed to fail.  Yup.  As a child I was given impossibly high standards to achieve.  If I happened to almost attain the standard, the rules were changed.  Rules changed constantly, guaranteeing I failed.  Then I repeated the behavior to myself over the years.  My counselor tried valiantly to get me to fire my ‘mean’ boss.  As he described my ‘mean’ boss I realized he was talking about me being mean to me. Still working at firing that ‘mean’ boss.

I evaluated the year.  Ups and downs, successes and failures.  I’m spending the time between Christmas and New Year thinking about where I am going with my life.  It is important for me to acknowledge to myself that I did do some things well.  I also recognize that I had some big fails.  Some I can do something about, others I can’t.  After evaluation I give myself the month of January to set up my goals for the year.  I learned about SMART goals and am working at using this type of goal in my life.  If the goal can be broken down into smaller parts then these smaller parts become my goals.  For example, improving my health is a massive goal including many different aspects.  I break these down to smaller building block pieces.

What is a SMART goal?  Found an article online that gives a good description:

One definition of the acronym however has been the most popular. It is this:

S. – Specific

M. – Measurable

A. – Achievable

R. – Realistic

T. – Time based

Here are some of the many variants:

S – Specific, or significant, stretching, stimulating, simple, self owned, strategic, sensible…

M. – Measurable, or meaningful, motivating, manageable, maintainable…

A. – Achievable, or attainable, action-oriented, appropriate, agreed, assignable, ambitious, accepted, audacious…

R. – Relevant, or rewarding, results-oriented, resourced, recorded, reviewable, robust…

T. – Time based or time-bound, time- lined, track-able…
S.M.A.R.T.E.R. Goals are also popular today.

E. and R. are added after the letters S.M.A.R.T.

They signify the following:

E.- Evaluate, excitable, ethical…

R – Re-evaluate, reward, reassess…

But what does all this mean?

  • This means that if you are new to goal setting and happen to be surfing the internet to learn about s.m.a.r.t goals you will find a dozen and one different interpretations and could well end up being totally confused!
  • Not only that, the quality of the goal you actually set will vary depending on which interpretation you follow – and believe me they are not all equal!

My advice? If you are going to set a smart goal stick to the simple ,most popular, version above.


SMART goals make sense to me. If I build a house one brick at a time, I build a life one small goal at a time.


4 thoughts on “SMART baby steps

  1. Pingback: Know where you are going then | PTSD - Accepting, Coping, Thriving

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