Reach your goals with these tech toolsPublished: Jan 6, 2022
Whether you’re setting your 2022 goals or orchestrating a grand five-year plan, technology can be a useful companion in helping you achieve your targets. Check out these apps and web tools for setting and keeping track of your goals.
How to set a realistic goal
The SMART goal framework is commonly used to craft achievable, realistic goals. Here’s a quick breakdown:
Specific: What is your goal, and why do you want to achieve it?
Measurable: You should be able to concretely measure and track your progress towards that goal.
Achievable: Is your goal realistic? It should challenge you but still be attainable.
Relevant: Ideally, your goal should align with your values and larger life goals, and should be important to you.
Time-bound: Set a deadline and checkpoints to make sure you’re constantly reviewing your progress.
Examples of SMART goals
I aim to run 5km twice a week, starting out with 2km per week and hitting my target by June.
I will earn a certificate in Python by the end of the year to build up my work-related skillset.
I aim to consistently drink 8 glasses of water per day this year.
There are plenty of other goal-setting frameworks out there (with increasingly quirky acronyms) for different temperaments and timeframes, for example Wish, Outcome, Obstacle, Plan (WOOP), Wildly Important Goals (WIG), and Big Hairy Audacious Goals (BHAG).
Check them out if SMART goals aren’t what you’re looking for.
Lifetick is a rich productivity web tool that guides you through setting your goals, using the SMART goals framework as a foundation.
Categorise each goal according to priority, achievability, and where it fits into your core values (e.g., career, wealth, health).
Split your large goals into tasks that will help you reach them. For example, by setting aside $500 to invest each month, you’re slowly working towards your retirement goals.
The free version comes with limited goals and trackers, so subscribe if you wish to unlock the tool’s full potential.
Other notable features: A “Dreams” section to capture aspirations you may not be ready to make into goals yet, a journal where you can log your notes and thoughts, detailed reports to keep track of your progress, and a dashboard to see your goals and tasks at a glance.
Use this if you: Love keeping your goals and tasks organised and don’t mind a no-frills, project management tool aesthetic.
No clue where to even begin with your goals? Dreamfora comes with Dream “templates” such as “30 books in 3 months” or “Build better mental health”.
These Dreams come prepopulated with editable habits (repeated actions, e.g., reading daily) and tasks (one-time actions, e.g., looking for nearby bookstores) so you don’t have to stress about breaking down your goals into achievable steps.
You also have the option of creating and customising your own Dream plan if you can’t find one that suits you in the Discover page.
Other notable features: A feed where you can view the progress of other members to motivate yourself, a progress dashboard where you can view your achievements, a Discover feed to get more inspiration for your goals, and a clean and pleasing design with cute illustrations.
Use this if you: Need help coming up with your goals and the steps to reach them.
Vision Board apps
A vision board is a collage of images, photos and quotes that affirm your goals and dreams, and serves as a form of inspiration and motivation.
Build your board by adding your goals in-app and pairing them with inspiring images.
For example, your dream could be to “Build a happy home” and your image can be that of your family, or “Get healthier” with an image of your favourite workout.
Use a vision board app if you: Believe in manifesting your dream life using visualization tools, a la self-help book The Secret.
Alternatively, try apps like Instagram or Pinterest to collect images and organise them into a vision board.
Some popular vision board apps:
Dreaming – Life Vision (Android only)
Fans of role-playing games (RPG) and pixel art will enjoy this quirky to-do list app that gamifies the task list.
Habitica doesn’t help you set your goals, but it’ll definitely make keeping track of your progress a lot of fun.
Gain points, level up and win in-game rewards like pets and equipment when you complete tasks (and lose points when you don’t).
Other notable features: Boss fights and quests to keep you motivated as you build new habits and become more productive, an avatar you can customise with clothes, hair, and accessories, a chatroom (or, tavern) where you can relax and chat with other users, and communities (or, guilds) you can join to connect with people who have common interests.
Use this if you: Want a feature packed to-do list to gamify your life, or simply love old school RPGs.
Timecap’s premise is simple: it helps you keep track of your progress, whether you’re building or breaking a habit or working towards a goal.
Enter your desired goal or habit and your schedule, e.g., exercise twice a day or attend online class weekly, then log your progress over time.
Other notable features: Reminders for individual goals, streaks and statistics to keep you motivated, and a simple and clean design that makes the app easy to use.
Use this if you: Want a simple, fuss-free tool to track your progress.
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