Creating SMART Goals as a Traveling Nurse in 2024


Chloe’ Sizer | January 22nd, 2024

The open road stretches before you, fellow wanderlusting RN! As a travel nurse, the new year brings not only the promise of exciting destinations and diverse experiences, but also the opportunity for incredible professional growth. To make the most of this adventurous year, setting SMART goals is key. These clear, concise, and achievable objectives will guide your journey and help you reach new heights in your travel nursing career.

So, what makes a goal SMART?

S – Specific: Don’t settle for vague intentions. Instead, pinpoint exactly what you want to achieve. For example, instead of “I want to be a better nurse,” aim for “I will complete five online modules on critical care skills by June 30th.”

M – Measurable: Track your progress! Quantify your goal so you can celebrate milestones and stay motivated. For instance, “I will secure three travel nurse contracts in locations with hiking trails within a 50-mile radius” makes progress tangible.

A – Attainable: Push yourself, but be realistic. Set goals that are challenging yet achievable with dedication and effort. “I will learn to speak conversational Spanish by the end of my assignment in Guatemala” might be more realistic than “I will become fluent in Spanish in three months.”

R – Relevant: Ensure your goals align with your overall aspirations and values. Choose objectives that matter to you and will move you closer to your long-term vision. “I will volunteer at a community health clinic during my assignment in Chicago to gain experience in public health nursing” connects your goal to your passion for underserved communities.

T – Time-Bound: Set deadlines! Having a specific timeframe provides a sense of urgency and keeps you on track. “I will network with five nurse leaders at my current facility by February 15th to explore leadership opportunities” adds a concrete timeframe for action.

Ready to craft your own SMART goals? Let’s explore some exciting possibilities for travel nurses in 2024:

  • Skill Development: Aim to master a new nursing specialty, hone your leadership skills, or delve into research by setting specific learning objectives and deadlines.
  • Financial Freedom: Set SMART goals for saving, investing, or even achieving financial independence through travel nursing. Track your progress and celebrate reaching milestones.
  • Adventure Awaits: Plan your dream travel nurse assignments! Define the locations, types of facilities, and personal experiences you desire, and work towards securing those contracts.
  • Giving Back: Dedicate a portion of your year to volunteering your skills. Set goals for the number of hours you want to contribute, the specific causes you want to support, or the impact you want to make.
  • Work-Life Balance: Don’t forget to prioritize your well-being! Set goals for self-care, hobbies, and exploring your new surroundings. Remember, a happy and healthy nurse is a successful travel nurse.

Remember, your SMART goals are your roadmap to a fulfilling and enriching travel nursing experience in 2024. Be bold, be specific, and most importantly, believe in yourself! The open road awaits, and with your SMART goals as your guide, you’re sure to have an incredible journey.

Bonus Tip: Visualize your goals! Create a vision board, write them down in a journal, or share them with your support network. Visualization can keep you motivated and focused on achieving your dreams.

Happy travels and professional triumphs, fellow adventurers!

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