Attainable Goals - Reach Higher And Achieve More

Attainable goals is another natural step in the SMART setting goal process. With attainment we are now focusing on how we can make the goal come true in our life. Some people call this the achievable step rather than the attainable step. There is not much to choose between them. (As long as we understand what we mean that is the most important thing, is it not?)

After all if we are uncertain about whether we can attain or achieve our goal then the whole process is put in doubt. Our success with specifying our target or aim, and discovering how we can measure progress could be in vain if we feel that the goal is too difficult for us or we doubt whether we can reach it.

The SMART process

SMART is a really useful process by which we can clarify our aim and ensure that it is not only what we want but that we can achieve it and within a realistic time frame. Attainable goals is step three in this process.


SMART stands for

  1. Specific
  2. Measurable
  3. Attainable
  4. Realistic
  5. Timely

follow the links to find out more about this approach to goal setting and how it can change your life.


Is it attainable or achievable?

We have started to identify (the specific goal step) what we want to go for. This is what we want to achieve. We have also looked at how we can assess our progress towards achieving this goal (the measurable goal step). But can we set attainable goals?

But can we achieve or attain it?

  • What might stand in our way?
  • the difficulty of the venture
  • we are not excited by our task
  • we are not motivated by our target
  • can we visualize ourselves achieving our goal?
  • do we feel capable of accomplishing our task?
  • do we feel our goal is a step too far?

If the above are not in place, or only partially so, we may have to revisit our task or goal. It may well need greater clarification, assessment or specification. Better to admit this now and reconsider our options than to waste precious time in a misguided direction.

Is our goal within reach?

If we set ourselves too high a standard or set the bar too high we may be setting ourselves up for failure. Are we setting attainable goals? We need to

  • feel confident about our task
  • know our capabilities
  • realize that we have the abilities to achieve our aim
  • have the confidence in ourselves to act
  • be motivated by the goal to proceed with energy and vigor
  • give ourselves a break and not beat ourselves up if we don't come through first time

What should we avoid?

Is there anything we should be avoiding? Going for our attainable goals is NOT to set ourselves up for failure, which

  • could lead to a negative experience
  • could be a body blow to our confidence
  • could hit our self esteem badly
  • could lower our feeling of self worth
  • could hit our self image
  • could hit our motivation to try other tasks and projects
  • could inhibit our going for other goals in the future

But we can stretch . . .

Setting the bar that little bit higher can be an incentive. Are our attainable goals within our grasp? An incentive to

  • grow and develop
  • to continue on and on towards realizing our potential
  • accept the challenge and achieve more
  • help us to realize what we are really capable of
  • help us to understand that we are not alone and that help is often at hand
  • help us to experience that life is on our side and will rarely let us down
  • help inspire us to greater efforts
  • go after our attainable goals with energy, foresight and enthusiasm

And achieve more . . .

We all have qualities and abilities that we little realize. We need to give ourselves the opportunities to let these have an airing, to let these skills, strengths and abilities out to play.

When we are set a task or we set ourselves a target we begin the process by which we can achieve our prize.

  • we can use talents that we already have
  • we can develop talents and new strengths (where they might have been lacking before)
  • we can start to see opportunities that can bring us nearer to fulfilling our goals
  • we can realize that if we move forward wisely, considering the steps we will be making, we can start on our road to success
  • we should understand that effort will bring those 'nearly out of sight goals' into clearer focus and easier to see their accomplishment
  • the more concerted and focused effort we put in the closer we get to our goal and the task may shrink
  • at the same time as our task may appear to be less daunting our ambitions may grow and expand - either to meet the challenge before us or to expand and develop our horizons
  • and to find out in no time that our goal is achieved

And we can have some fun along the way too!

Achieving your goal

There is nothing like a little success to

  • bolster our confidence
  • enhance our self esteem
  • help maintain a healthy self image
  • to show us that we have the courage to make a good life for ourselves
  • to show us that control and discipline can help us in life
  • to boost our feeling of self worth
  • to show us that growth and development are the name of the game
  • to help us realize our true potential in life
  • to help us contribute to the greater good
  • to show us that there is more to life than meets the eye

That feeling . . .

What a boost - the feeling that achievement is just around the corner. Those moments when we realize that we are just about there. The task is nigh on over and the prize is within our grasp.

We obviously should not relax lest we have an eleventh hour disappointment, but we can start to feel happy and comfortable, satisfied and proud of achievement. This should be tempered by the size of the task. Completing our first novel or an important essay, for instance, should be viewed more highly than deciding our route for a visit to the shops later that day.

Bur reward ourselves we should - in fair proportion to our task - because we should and no other reason. For if we don't then who will, and if we do we will help ourselves towards many (many) further tasks and goals as our life continues on into our future.

And we can realize that we can set and achieve attainable goals in our life. What a confidence booster!


AND we can look at our SMART targets with renewed interest

  1. Specific
  2. Measurable
  3. Attainable
  4. Realistic
  5. Timely

follow the links to find out more about this approach to goal setting and how it can change your life.