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Manal Bole, Sports Psychologist

In a world consumed with the idea of being constantly productive, with abundant information from various media sources which govern our daily life and the expectation to match the pace of our progress, it is only human to feel distracted, off-track, and lost. In the midst of all this, effective goal setting is your helping hand to find your center, re-join and persevere on your journey towards your ambitions.

Goal setting, in its origin, is “purposefully directed action,” and allows you to put yourself in the driver’s seat. It is a tool which can help you achieve a specific vision with the development of focused and effective approaches.

The realm of sport and fitness is that of continued effort, outcomes, persistence, and growth. Goal setting in sport and fitness is where one can see the effectiveness of this tool almost immediately. One of the most common techniques is the SMARTER principle which helps structure your goals by making them:


  1. S- Specific
  2. M- Measurable
  3. A- Achievable
  4. R- Realistic
  5. T- Time-bound
  6. E- Enjoyable and
  7. R- Recorded.

A relatable obstacle for almost all people would be that of the lack of motivation or perseverance to keep going, and the misleading expectation of always having control over the outcome. This is where the sport-oriented goal setting of “Process – Performance – Outcome goals” is exceptionally valuable.

Pro Tip: The level of control over these three types of goal is as follows: Process- High level of control, Performance- Moderate level of control, Outcome- Low level of control.

Some ways to help yourselves make the most out of and persist on your journey towards your set goals are:

-Maintain a handwritten diary/journal or video recording folder of your daily efforts taken to achieve your goals.

-Add some motivational posters and notes around your home/work to remind and encourage yourself.

-Share your goals with your closest friend and family members so they can support you in your journey.

-When you get stuck working forward to set goals, work backwards from your desired goal until the present moment.

-Visualize is the magic word. Every morning when you wake up, every night before you sleep. Visualize yourself having already achieved your goal.

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