Forget SMART goals, create SLIM personal objectives

Today, we're diving into a refreshingly effective approach to setting personal goals - the slim framework. I only recently came across it and, for me, it's so much more usable and real than SMART goals.


The SLIM framework comes from Marc Effron's book 8 Steps to High Performance: Focus On What You Can Change. I love it as it focuses on constant learning and the impact you want from it.

What is the SLIM framework?

Think of SLIM as more than just a catchy acronym; it's a roadmap to guide you towards becoming the best version of yourself. Let's break it down:

Specific: Nailing down the bullseye

Imagine setting out on a road trip with no destination in mind. Sure, the open road is exciting, but without a clear endpoint, you might find yourself lost and aimless. Similarly, when setting goals, specificity is your compass. A vague goal like "get healthier" lacks the guiding force needed to succeed.

So, let's be SLIM about it! Transform that vague goal into something specific, like "lose 15 pounds by the end of the year through a combination of regular exercise and a balanced diet." See how much clearer that is? You now have a target to aim for and a plan to get there.

Learning-oriented: Embrace the journey

Life isn't just about the destination; it's about the adventure along the way. When setting goals, don't just focus on the outcome – embrace the learning experience embedded within the journey. It's like aiming for a bullseye while also perfecting your archery skills.

Let's say you want to learn a new language. Instead of just setting a goal to "speak fluent Spanish," take a learning-oriented SLIM approach. "Dedicate 30 minutes each day to practising Spanish, aiming to hold a 10-minute conversation with a native speaker after six months." Now, you're not only setting a target but also savouring the process of growth.

Impactful: Making waves that matter

Why climb a mountain that doesn't leave you breathless at the summit? Your goals should resonate with your heart's desires, and aspirations that stir your soul - making a lasting impact. Going SLIM means focusing on goals that truly matter to you.

Consider your professional aspirations. Rather than merely seeking "career advancement", let's go the impactful SLIM route. "Lead a project that positively impacts the lives of underprivileged communities within the next year." Now, your goal isn't just about climbing the corporate ladder - it's about elevating the lives of others.

Measurable: From abstract to achievable

Ah, the sweet satisfaction of progress! Measurability is your ticket to tracking your journey and celebrating each step forward. It's like marking your progress on a treasure map, knowing you're getting closer to that elusive chest of gold.

Let's take the common goal of saving money. By going SLIM, it transforms into, "Save £5,000 in a dedicated savings account within 12 months by setting aside 20% of monthly income." Suddenly, you have a clear measurement of progress and the motivation to hit those milestones.

How to put SLIM into action

Now that we've dissected the SLIM framework, let's put it into action with a step-by-step guide:

  1. Reflect and visualise: Take a moment to reflect on your aspirations. What are your dreams and desires? Visualise where you want to be in a specific area of your life – be it health, career, relationships, or personal development.
  2. SLIM it down: Apply the SLIM framework to your aspirations. Turn them into Specific, Learning-oriented, Impactful, and Measurable goals. Write them down to solidify your commitment.
  3. Break it down: Divide your goals into smaller, achievable steps. This not only makes your journey less overwhelming but also provides a sense of accomplishment along the way.
  4. Set a timeline: Assign a realistic timeframe to your goals. This adds urgency and prevents procrastination.
  5. Gather resources: Identify the resources, skills, or knowledge you'll need to accomplish your goals. This could mean seeking out courses, mentors, or tools that will aid your journey.
  6. Track progress: Regularly review and track your progress. Adjust your approach if needed, and celebrate every milestone reached.
  7. Stay flexible: Life is unpredictable, and circumstances may change. Be open to adapting your goals while staying true to the SLIM principles.

As you embark on this transformative journey with the SLIM framework, remember that you're not alone. The path to personal growth is enhanced with guidance, support, and accountability. That's where I come in as your dedicated life coach.

Imagine having a partner who understands the SLIM philosophy inside out, ready to tailor it to your unique circumstances. Together we'll craft personalised goals, tackle obstacles, and celebrate victories – big and small – along the way.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author. All articles published on Life Coach Directory are reviewed by our editorial team.

Share this article with a friend
Show comments

Find a coach dealing with Personal development

All coaches are verified professionals

All coaches are verified professionals