3 Reasons Why SMART Goals are Dumb

4 min readAug 15, 2022

This is my little rant about why SMART goals are dumb. Yes, this could be considered a controversial topic but why not keep reading to find out a far more fun and simple way to write out your goals?

The most important takeaway from this post is to WRITE down your goals, however you do it. Less than 10% of people set written, positive goals each year.

Less than 10%!

Imagine the kind of world we would live in if we doubled or tripled the current number of people who write down their goals. I would take an educated guess that the levels of broke and unhappy people would decrease significantly. The world would be a very different place.

Writing ideas down makes them real, gets your thoughts in order and is a permanent record of your wants and dreams. Studies have shown that you boost your chances of accomplishing goals by at least 40% if they are written down.

If you read this post and still want to write out your goals the SMART way, please, by all means go ahead. But whatever you do and however you do it, please WRITE down your goals because if you don’t set goals, someone else will do it for you.

Here are three reasons why SMART goals are dumb…

1) SMART Goals are Vague

SMART is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Action, Realistic and Time. Except that it doesn’t!

Sometimes the SMART goals acronym has ‘Achievable’ for the A and ‘Relevant’ for the R. Plus, Time can mean any number of things including time-bound, timeframe, or even temporal on occasion. No one even agrees on what the SMART goals acronym even stands for so why are we trying to use it to set our goals?

2) SMART Goals are Hard Work

The SMART goals method provides five criteria for setting goals in a kind of abstract way. You have to go back and forth between the specific goal you are trying to write down and determine whether it checks off against each of the criteria (which can’t be agreed upon, anyway).

By the time you make sure your goal is SMART, you have done so much work you feel like you have achieved your goal when all you have done is achieved the almost impossible task of writing it down ‘correctly’!

3) SMART Goals are Boring

Writing down a SMART goal, if you are even able to do it, leads to a goal that doesn’t have an emotional connection, a vivid portrait of how you will feel and what you will be doing when you get your goal.

It is simply not compelling enough to drive you to take action.

How to Write Your Goals the Super Sexy Way

My book, Super Sexy Goal Setting lays out a fun, simple and, of course, super sexy alternative way to write out your goals. Here is a summary:

  • Brainstorm: The first step is to brainstorm everything you want. Put aside a few minutes and simply go wild. It doesn’t have to be written in any particular format. You can make a list, draw a mind map or write on the back of a napkin. The important thing is to just to jot down every idea you have right now. You can’t do this wrong!
  • Template: Take one idea and turn it into a super sexy goal. A super sexy goal has three elements: powerful language, a vivid description and an emotional connection weaved in. All you need to do is plug your goal into the template below and all three super sexy elements are included for you.

I am so happy and grateful that (goal success) on or before (date). [Vivid description of goal].

For example: I am so happy and grateful that I have published a children’s picture book on or before October 2017. I have just received the first five-star review of my beautiful book and am feeling so happy that it is out in the world for kids and their parents to enjoy.

  • Action: Read your goal every single day and then take action to make it happen. Believe it will happen. Schedule it in. Yes, that’s it!

Super Sexy Goal Setting Challenge

SMART goals are dumb because they are vague, hard work and boring. Why not try writing out your goals the super sexy way?

Use the template to write out a goal and send it to me at julie@julieschooler.com. I want to it to be so delicious I will be able to taste it!

I am so happy and grateful that (goal success) on or before (date). [Vivid description of goal].

I really hope you write out your goals the super sexy way but most of all I hope this inspires you to brainstorm your heart’s desires, write out your most desirable goals and start taking massive action to achieve them.


Julie is an author, speaker and mama of two beautiful, tiny humans. Connect with her at JulieSchooler.com and find out how to rediscover your sparkle today.