How Setting SMART Goals Will Help You Crush It this Year

I’m a bit late to the party in setting my goals for 2016, but I’m excited to be taking a different direction with my goal setting this year (and I hope you try out this new strategy along with me!). Instead of making my usual list of goals that I only half-accomplish, this year I’m setting SMART goals.

You may have already heard about SMART goals from my Rich & Fit 21-Day Challenge, or from my podcast interview with author and financial consultant Robin Taub. If not, SMART goals are:

Specific, Meaningful, Action-oriented, Realistic, and Timely

That’s right, so instead of just listing what I hope to carry out this year, I’m going to:

  • Be specific about what I want to accomplish
  • Choose goals that are truly meaningful to me
  • Take action and outline the steps I need to take to achieve them
  • Set goals that I know aren’t beyond my capabilities
  • Set timeframes for each of them

With that being said, I’m also going to limit my goals to 5. I’ve always been too ambitious with my goals, and the downside to that is I get overwhelmed, unmotivated and don’t end up achieving all of my goals. By sticking to 5 goals this year, I know I can crush every single one of them before Dec. 31.

Before I share my 2016 goals with you, I always like to look back on how I did with my previous year’s goals. Here’s what I set for myself last year.

2015 Life & Financial Goals

  1. Get my full driver’s license. NO
  2. Read 15 books. NO (I think I read 6?)
  3. Read at least 2 personal finance books and 2 digital marketing books. NO (I think I read maybe 1?)
  4. Complete a 10k run. YES
  5. From start to finish complete a workout program. (IE. P90X) NO
  6. Do at least one thing that scares me. YES (that 10k scared the heck out of me, and so did starting a podcast)
  7. Do at least 3 30-day challenges. NO (Wow, I sure was ambitious!)
  8. Learn at least one new skill. YES 
  9. Complete the Google AdWords and Analytics certifications. NO
  10. Learn basic HTML coding. YES (I took an HTML coding class last winter)
  11. SEO optimize all of my blog posts, get a new headshot and banner image, and make sure all posts are updated properly within my new WordPress template. YES (though I have a lot more work to do SEO-wise after switching over my domain)
  12. Write blog posts at least a week in advance, and stick with the Monday, Wednesday, Friday schedule again. NO
  13. Start a new stream of passive income that isn’t related to this blog or my current investments. NO
  14. Be more strict with sticking to my budget so I can save up as much income as possible. YES

2016 Life & Financial Goals

Goal #1

Get my full driver’s license.

Action plan

I’m going to sign up for driving courses this spring with a school I’ve looked into that’s right near my apartment. After I’ve completed a few refresher driving classes, I’m going to schedule my driving test before the start of summer.

Goal #2

Get at least 10 high-level guests to be on my podcast.

Action plan

Write a list of who I want to interview, contact them (and follow-up until I get an answer) and schedule them to be on my show in 2016.

Goal #3

Pitch to be featured or write for at least 3 leading media outlets/publications.

Action plan

Make a list of publications, find out who to contact and come up with interesting content to pitch. Start this in February, but try to pitch to a new media outlet at least once a month.

Goal #4

Complete my certificate in Financial Services Advice with the Canadian Securities Institute.

Action plan

I’ve already enrolled in one class and am half-way through it so I plan on completing that course and taking the exam for it before the start of April. After that I will give myself 6 months to complete the other two courses.

Goal #5

Make the most side hustle money I’ve ever made.

Action plan

This is a big goal, but since every year I usually focus on saving and budgeting, I want to put more focus on making extra income. I’ve got a lot of plans and the launch of the Rich & Fit Challenge has truly inspired me to come up with future programs and resources that I eventually hope to monetize.

I also plan on doing more paid brand partnerships with brands I truly believe in. In order to make this lofty goal possible, I’m going to make myself a business plan before March and outline what specific programs or resources I hope to make and the steps I need to take to make them happen.

I didn’t think I’d be able to pull off the Rich & Fit Challenge in only 4 months (from conception to running the program), so anything’s possible!

What are your SMART goals for the year? Let me know in the comments!

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Showing 4 comments
  • Andrew Daniels

    These are some great goals Jessica. I did the same thing this year in making only a couple of goals for health and money/ business. It’s waaaay better for your mental health when you accomplish more of your goals. Gives you momentum. Good job! Can’t wait to hear the progress through 2016.

    • Jessica Moorhouse

      Totally agree!

  • Derek @


    Those are some great goals for 2016. I like the idea that you’ve made most of them SMART. I guess these are all “due” by the end of the year? Looks like you did a pretty good job on most of the 2015 goals. Good luck!

    • Jessica Moorhouse

      They’re all due by the end of the year but I’m going to give them all specific due dates. For instance, the driver’s license goal I am setting the due date of no later than August 2016. 🙂

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