Set Wellness Goals

Set S.M.A.R.T. Wellness Goals

Setting and pursuing wellness goals is a great way to improve your health and well-being. Goals serve as a guide to achieve something you desire. A simple goal might state:

  • I will get more sleep.

S.M.A.R.T. goals include details that can help you plan how you will reach your goal within a time-frame, and measure your accomplishments.

S.M.A.R.T. goals are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-based

  • Specific – the goal specifies Who will do What? When? Where? And Why?
    For example: I will go to bed every night at 10 p.m. and wake up at 6 a.m. starting this Monday so that I can be more alert each day.
  • Measurable – the goal is measurable. The sleep goal has at least two possible metrics:
    • How many days per week is the sleep time kept?
    • How alert do you feel on a scale from 1-5 each day?
  • Attainable – the goal is possible to achieve. It is helpful to set goals just beyond reach so that you stretch forward accomplish them.
    • The sleep goal could be very hard to accomplish for someone whose bedtime and waking time varies daily. A better goal in that case might reflect attaining a 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. sleep time 4 of 7 days per week for the next four weeks. Once this goal is met, another goal can be set for 5 or 6 days per week.
  • Realistic – the goal takes into consideration what is going on in your life now.
    For example: It may be that you have a night class from 5 - 8 p.m.. A 10 p.m. bedtime may not provide enough time to get home from class, eat, visit, and do homework. A more realistic goal might be to sleep from midnight to 8 a.m..
  • Time-based – the goal states when you will have completed the goal, or when you will do the tasks you have assigned yourself.
    • The sleep goal starts on Monday. Another way to incorporate time into the sleep goal would be: By the end of the semester, I will consistently go to bed at 10 p.m. and wake up at 6 a.m. at least five days per week, so that I can be more alert.
Steps to set S.M.A.R.T. wellness goals:
  1. Complete the Personal Wellness Profile, which assesses your current health status and provides recommendations on enhancing your wellness.
  2. Determine what aspects of wellness you would like to focus on at this time.
  3. Explore your preferred wellness topics on the Wellness @ ASU website to get ideas of how to make improvements in your wellness.
  4. Decide what actions or wellness habits you would like to change.
  5. Write out your goals, using the S.M.A.R.T. goal guidelines, above.
  6. Write a list of the actions you will take to accomplish your goal.
Sample S.M.A.R.T. wellness goals:
  • I will join an intramurals team this semester at ASU to have fun while being active. Actions:
    • Go to the Intramurals webpage to learn how to sign up.
    • Sign up
    • Go to practice
    • Play games and have fun!
  • I will go meatless for all meals not matter where I eat a minimum of three days per week for the next four weeks to help lower my cholesterol levels. Actions:
    • Plan ahead which days each week to go meatless.
    • Review how to include high protein foods that are plant-based.
    • When eating prepared foods, read the label or ask the server what is in the recipe.
  • I will always use a light when riding my bike at night, starting today.
    • Research a buy a light for my bike and/or my helmet.