Setting SMART Goals When Learning English
Hi everyone, my name is Danielle from SpeakingEnglish.co.il
In this video I will be talking to you about setting SMART goals when learning English.
SMART stands for “Specific”, “Measureable”, “Attainable”, “Relevant”, and “Timely”.
This guideline allows for you to set the best possible goals for yourself. Learning a new language is difficult. Often times, we go through our education with only one goal in mind “I want to learn how to speak English.” The problem with this goal is that it is way too broad. Are you hoping to be able to speak enough English to get around comfortably in an English speaking country, or do you want to be able to have complex conversations about your opinions and feelings with other English speakers? It is important to recognize exactly what you are hoping to achieve.
SMART goals allow you to properly measure your success and they keep you motivated. Let’s talk a little bit about each section of SMART.
Specific: When you begin setting your goals, think about what exactly it is that you are hoping to achieve. Why do you want to reach this goal? Perhaps, you often travel to New York City for business and would like to be able to talk about future plans for the company in the meetings. Or maybe, you really enjoy American entertainment and would love it if you could understand the jokes that your favorite comedian is telling. Whatever your reason why is, define it, and set a specific goal to meet that reason. For example, “I will be able to talk about the future when speaking in business meetings.”
Measurable: Having measureable goals means that you will be able to track your progress. This allows you to really see how close you are getting to each goal. Let’s use the previous example and turn it into a measureable goal, “I will be able to speak ten different sentences using the future in my business meetings.” Now, each week you will be able to see how much closer you are getting to achieving your goal based on how many sentences you can speak.
Attainable: Do you have the time and resources available to meet your goal? If your business meeting is next week, you may want to reevaluate your goal and make it more easily attainable. In some cases, you may have the proper amount of time but you do not have the resources that you need. How will you learn these ten future sentences? Signing up for some English classes may be the step that you need to take in order to properly reach your goals.
Relevant: Are you ready to commit to this goal? Would your time be better spent working on something else? How important is it to you to achieve this? These are all things that you must consider when setting your goals. If you ask yourself these questions and find that your goal is irrelevant to your future plans, it is time to redevelop your goal or possibly get rid of it all together. If you are not fully committed to your goal, it is a lot less likely that you will reach it.
Timely: The last step to take when developing a goal is to set a time limit for yourself. Do you want to reach this goal in twelve weeks or twelve months? Setting a due date for yourself will help you measure your success along the way. If you want to achieve a goal of learning ten future sentences in ten weeks, then you should learn a new sentence each week. This structure will help keep you motivated. Let’s bring back the example from earlier and finish it by adding a time limit, “I will be able to speak ten different sentences in the future in my business meeting on July 9th, so every day at 19:00 I will practice for 30 minutes by listening to a business podcast.”
Isn’t that much more specific than “I want to learn how to speak English”? Our new goal is specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely.
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