Specific– A good goal is clear and unambiguous. Instead of stating, “I will eat healthier” try setting a goal of “eating 5 servings of fruits and vegetables each day”.
Measurable– Set a goal that allows you to monitor your progress.
Attainable– Sometimes we set goals that are unrealistic. Do not confuse the term unrealistic with impossible. Everyday people are making the once impossible, possible.
Relevant– Connecting an internal meaning with your goal makes it all that more important and can help you keep focused on the finish line. Setting goals that have little to no value to you typically will not be achieved.
Time Bound– Setting a time-frame to achieve your goal can help fuel motivation and keep you on track towards your healthier habit. Goals without time limits often get brushed aside and swept underneath the carpet.
Ask yourself, “Are your daily habits reflective of your healthy goals?” Often our actions are communicating the opposite of what our goals are. If your goal is to become more active (which is too broad of a goal to begin with), yet you come home and sit on the couch and watch TV all evening; how are your actions helping you achieve your goal? Remember, there are several dimensions of health, such as emotional, social and the more well-known, physical dimension. Try to set goals that encompass more than one dimension to improve your overall wellness.
Blog about it. No, it does not need to be a formal blog, but research shows that people who share their goals and health journey with others tend to stay more on track . This could be achieved simply by telling a friend or a co-worker about your goals and then providing them with updates along the way. You could keep a personal journal to reflect when you feel you are losing motivation. The social media network has created a perfect foundation for sharing your health journey with others. And since I have a blog myself, I am going to do just that.
My SMART Goals:
1) Consume less diet soda.-I will cut back the amount of diet soda I drink to only a couple during the week and eventually will work on weaning it completely out of my diet.
2) Read more and watch less TV. Any competition that involves food, dancing, sewing or singing typically calls my name, but I have a stack of amazing nutrition books I’ve been meaning to read. I plan on reading 1 new book every 4-8 weeks.
3) Complete a muscle-up, body weight power clean and squat 185 lbs before the end of the year. My current max squat clean is 118 lbs and I can squat 155 lbs. These exercises are a shear test of upper and lower body strength as well as coordination and core stability. My habits to help attain this goal will be going to Crossfit regularly, fueling my body with proper nutrition and hydration and scheduling appropriate rest/recovery phases to allow for muscle growth and hypertrophy.
Check in here on my blog throughout the year as I update my progress with achieving my healthy living goals.
Summary of goal setting.
1) Don’t give up too quickly. Sometimes new habits need as long as a couple of months to become routine-like in our lives.
2) Grab a buddy to help you stay on track with your goal.
3) Set SMART goals, the more specific the goal, the easier it is to monitor and achieve.
4) Document your progress whether it’s a personal journal, telling a friend or family member or using a social media network.
5) Observe your actions and habits and see how they are helping you get closer to achieving your goal.
6) Any day is a great day to start making healthier habits, not just Monday, New Year’s Day or your birthday.