February 19, 2020
Setting goals is an important part of your journey with the NDIS. Your goals are what you aim to achieve as a result of receiving supports through the NDIS.
You will set a number of short-term and long-term goals at your initial NDIS planning meeting and have the chance to review these at each of your plan reviews.
Your plan funding is determined based on the goals you set and what support you require to achieve those goals. Every dollar of funding you receive needs to be associated with a goal in your plan. This is why it’s important that you properly explain the things you wish to achieve and what supports you require to achieve them.
In this article, we will discuss why it’s important to have goals, the best way to set goals and what support you have available.
Your goals are things you want to achieve with support from your NDIS plan funding. As well as helping you access the supports you need for day-to-day activities, your funding is also designed for capacity building to help you reach your goals.
Some examples of goals might be to do the shopping without assistance, join a new social group or enrolling in university. A goal to ‘be more independent’ is too vague and difficult to recognise when you have achieved it. You should try to be as specific as possible with your goals.
Before your initial planning meeting or plan review, it’s important that you sit down and map out what your goals are. Before you start planning your goals, you should consider the following:
Thinking about these things will help you to understand what it is that you want and need from your supports, what is currently working for you and what isn’t.
Your NDIS plan will usually have two short-term goals and a few medium to long-term goals. Your short-term goals are those which you want to achieve before your next plan review (usually 12 months). Think of these goals as stepping stones towards achieving your long-term goals. Your short-term goals also establish what funding you will receive towards supports.
For example, a short-term goal may be to develop your confidence and communication skills so that you can join a new social group this year. To do this you may need support from a behaviour therapist. This goal is good because it is within the 12-month timeframe, is specific and can be linked to a support.
Medium to long-term goals are those which you hope to achieve in the future. This might be 3 years away or 10 years away, it all depends on your individual needs. Although they may seem far away, getting clear on these goals will help you to receive the supports you need now to work towards the life you want in the future.
When setting your goals, one way to make it easier is to follow the SMART method.
Specific – try to be precise with your goals and avoid keeping them too broad.
Measurable – you should be able to track the progress of your goals so that you can stay motivated.
Achievable – your goals should be realistic and within your reach.
Relevant – every goal should work towards helping you achieve what you want and need.
Time-bound – you should set a target date for each goal, such as within 12 months.
It’s also good to spend some time reviewing your previous goals once the time comes to set new goals at your plan review. Reflection is an important part of growing and the key to learning from your previous experiences.
If you’re just starting your journey with the NDIS or are coming up to your next plan review, the team at Disability Plan Services can help you to set short-term and long-term goals for your plan. Our experienced team understand how the NDIS works and will spend the time to get to know you and your needs, ensuring you get the most out of your funding.
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