“Dreams without goals are just dreams.” - Denzel Washington
A new year is always a time we reflect on last year, the things we didn’t accomplish and setting resolutions to accomplish this time. Isn’t that about how it goes?
So often I see and hear the goals of losing weight, stop eating sugar, cut out carbs, work out everyday, etc. Would you say you’ve made a resolution like one of those one year? Did it happen, if not, then why didn’t it?
The flaw with a lot of resolutions are, they are made the night of New Year Eve or on New Years Day, and sometimes not planned out or mapped out on how it’ll happen. Most likely it’s a far reaching and not realistic thing. So let’s change that.
Goals should be SMART:
- S- Be Specific, clearly define your goals
- M- Make your goals measurable
- A- They need to be achievable
- R- Make them relevant and realistic to you
- T- Set a timeline
Bring focus to what you want to accomplish by making it specific to you, don’t just say lose weight. Weight loss can be a good goal, but it’s very general. How are you going to do it? Are you going to focus on your eating, making better meals, skipping the drive-thru, and finding an activity you enjoy? Write out specifically what you are going to do to make what you want to happen, happen.
Make it measurable, again if you want to lose weight, define it. Or if you want to make more home-cooked meals, plan out I am going to homecook my family's meals Sunday through Thursday and give yourself Friday and Saturday as free days.
Achievable goals are the most accomplished goals. Make it something that you can do, I’m not saying you can’t do big things, but by setting smaller, step by step goals it becomes easier to accomplish that big scary goal.
When setting goals it’s important to acknowledge your barriers to why you haven’t hit that goal in the past and adapt the goal in a way that is achievable. If your example is weight loss, did you not have motivation? Did you set the goal too high? Do you really even need to lose weight, are you just being too hard on yourself? Should you focus on strength training not weight loss? Adapt your goal to fit what will work for you.
Lastly, establish a timeline for how and when you will achieve your goal. Just saying a blank statement “I’m going to travel this year” and doing nothing to make that happen, I promise you won’t get around to it. You need to plan when and how it’s going to happen. Now the most important thing I want to cover is the power of your thoughts. With the media, and society, “diets” are the most common resolution people set for themselves, and probably 85% of the time they are unsuccessful. Why?
Sometimes it’s because we don’t believe in ourselves, we go too extreme and are unprepared. I want you to practice replacing your negative thoughts with positive ones. If you find yourself looking in the mirror and criticizing what you see, pick one thing you are proud of, that you like, that’s good about yourself. An easy one is that you are a fighter, you’re a warrior. As you change your thought process you’ll find there is no room in your mind for the negative.
Believe in yourself. You can accomplish great things by changing your mindset. If it’s hard to find some positive things in your life, come up with a personal statement to tell yourself to get your mind out of the negative. It can be simple as “I got this” to “I am amazing, I am strong, I am capable”. By telling yourself good things about yourself you will believe it, and in turn you will change the way you view life. I know you can do it! Put it into practice.
Make this year a year of focusing on the good things, what works out and be grateful. It will have a huge impact on how you move forward.
about the author
Linnley joined HealthTree in January 2020 as the Fitness Events Manager. Her husband is a childhood cancer survivor as well as a cancer biologist. Finding a cure, better treatments, and balance through treatments is what drives their family. Linnley is an Advanced Cancer Exercise Specialist and focuses on finding what you can do rather than can't.