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New Year’s Resolutions (SMART GOALS)

New Year’s Resolutions (SMART GOALS)

Every year, people make new year resolutions around this time.  You often hear people saying, “Next year, I’m going to lose weight” or “Next year, I’m going to quit smoking”.  While they may have the motivation at that time, they end up failing and never complete their resolution.  So, I say, instead of making new year resolutions, make SMART goals. 

If you want to make your resolution to lose weight next year, make sure you make it a SMART goal.  For example: “I am going to lose 20 pounds by February 15th”.  This is specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound.  You now have a specific goal to work towards as well as a time-frame.  The goal is realistic and can be achieved if you work towards it. 

Part of occupational wellness is setting mini-goals for yourself in your career.  Throughout my career with PSIMED, I have been doing this.  I started out as a psychological assistant at HCCJ in 2015.  In 2016, I entered Concord University’s MSW program.  In 2018, I graduated with my MSW and one month later, passed the LGSW exam.  At this point, I moved into a therapist position at HCCJ.  I began my clinical supervision in October 2018.  

Now my goal was to have my LICSW in 2021, but Covid hit in 2020 so that put a damper on things.  However, I did not let that stop me.  I just readjusted my goal and time to achieve that goal.  I completed my supervision in May 2023.  My plan was to test in June but then I accepted the position of Lead Therapist at Salem. So again, I readjusted my completion time.  I am happy to say that I will be testing for my LICSW in January 2024.  Date is set and all I need to do is go and pass the test!

Now that my goal completion is within reach, I have found that I am contemplating what my next career goal is going to be.  I have tossed around the idea of possibly getting my doctorate in social work as well as getting my CCHP.  I do know that I will be working on becoming more self-aware and learning how to be more tactful, among a few other personal goals.  Once I pass my test, I will set a SMART goal to achieve these things.  Right now, my focus is on achieving the goal that I have been working towards since 2018.

As long as I continue to challenge myself in my career and set goals for myself, I will continue to grow as a therapist and as an individual.  I find that it keeps me motivated to always be my best.

Just remember that even though something occurs that may prevent you from achieving your goal does not mean to give up on the goal.  Just take a deep breath, refocus, and reset your goal date.  Life happens and barriers pop up all the time in our lives.  This doesn’t mean you still can’t achieve those goals.  You just might have to push the due date a little further.

So, my question to you is simple…. what are your SMART goals this year?  Remember, when making those New Year Resolutions, make them mini-SMART goals or chances are, you will not succeed in achieving them. Always have mini-goals within your career.  We can always improve and better ourselves, even within our field!

Gina Hamilton MSW, LGSW

SCC Lead Therapist 


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