Create a SMART goal that meets the following criteria:
Relates to one of the skills covered in this course, and
You’d like to make your major point of focus this semester
Is relevant for moving you closer to your ‘ideal self’ (covered in week 1)
Articulate the connection between your goal and your desired future
Create a SMART action plan for achieving your goal by the end of the semester (or, depending on your goal, making substantive progress)
You are to create a personal goal relating to the development of one of the core skills. You will come up with a plan for pursuing that goal, and you will track your progress throughout the semester. This assignment relates to the goal and plan that you come up with. As a part of your final exam, you will then reflect on the process of pursuing that goal, and the successes and challenges you faced along the way.
You will use SMART to write a goal statement:
S – Specific
M – Measureable
A – Attainable
R – Relevant
T – Time-bound
By the end of the semester, I will have become more effective in managing conflict. I will do this by work toward this goal by working toward the following subgoals:
Subgoal 1: I will learn strategies for diffusing conflict (instead of just trying to avoid it).
Action Step 1: Create a list of people I know who manage conflict really well. Observe or ask them what they do to navigate tense situations so successfully (log these in my journal).
Action Step 2: Start experimenting with some of the techniques my role models use. Identify the approaches that work best for me (through journaling)
Subgoal 2: I will build a habit of perspective-taking in conflict management situations. That is, instead of just reacting to a perceived conflict (or avoiding it), I will practice first understanding the needs and goals of each person involved. I will dispassionately look at the situation and consider ways to meet the needs of each person involved.
Action Step 1: In each conflict situation I encounter, I will use my strength in empathy to consider the perspectives of others involved.
Action Step 2: When I’m about to enter a situation that could turn tense, I will take a moment to center myself/clear my mind. I will do this by using a brief breathing exercise.
Monitoring my progress: I will know that I am successfully moving toward my goal by the following indicators: (1) I will feel more confident in constructively managing potential conflict situations, (2) I will be better at regulating my own emotions in conflict situations (saving my emotional energy).
I will follow this format for each journal entry about a role model:
Role model’s approach:
Would this approach work for me? Why or why not?:
I will follow this format for each journal entry about a conflict situation I encounter:
Pre-conflict (if time):
– Describe the conflict situation:
– How might the other person be feeling or thinking about the situation? Why might they be feeling or thinking that way?
– What technique could I try in this situation to resolve the conflict?
– Describe how the situation unfolded:
– Describe the technique/approach I used:
– How confident did I feel on a scale of 1-5? (1=not confident, 5= confident)
– My emotional energy level (1= drained, 5= energized)
– Did I do a breathing exercise before the conversation? Yes / No