Goal setting is an important piece when trying to put together the puzzle of change. New Year’s marks the end of the holidays and a chance for a fresh start. Traveling, relatives and the general aura of the holidays make unhealthy choices all too easy. Lately there has been a black cloud over the New Year’s resolution. Even uttering the words evokes something that won’t last. So how do you make a change that will stick so you can have a healthy new year?
Start with why
Figure out exactly what you want. Do you want to lose weight or fit in to a smaller pants size? Or is it something more general, like feeling better or keeping up with kids or grandkids? Whatever it may be, you must dig deep into your subconscious and figure out exactly what it is you aren’t happy with.
Once you figure out what you want, you must figure out why you haven’t done it yet. Think about what stops you from being the person you want to be. It could be that you don’t have the time or your job leaves you drained. Maybe your spouse or kids keep getting in the way. Or maybe it’s just that you enjoy chocolate or alcohol a little too much. Whatever it may be, you must come to terms with it.
Make a plan
This is where writing down your goals and obstacles comes in to play. Write down specifically what your goal is. Then write down what it is that you think would stop you from attaining your goal. Once you can visualize what it is you’re working with, you can start to figure out how to get around it.
Continue to write things down as you go. For the past year I have written down almost all of my workouts. I also track what I eat in an app on my phone. I can see what works for me and what doesn’t. Think of it like a progress report.
Trust the process. Don’t get caught up in the end result. Instead focus on doing the best you can every day. Doing this allows you to leave the bad days behind, because they will happen. It could be a company luncheon, a rainy day, or a day where you don’t feel like doing anything. By taking things one day at a time, you can forget the less productive days so they don’t compound. Many times people take the approach that since they messed up one day then what’s another or another, and then before they know it they’re back to where they started. Mistakes are OK!
By taking these steps you can develop realistic, attainable goals that you can stick to this New Year. Remember, no one is perfect and your journey will be far from it. Make a plan that accounts for missteps so they don’t stop you from moving forward. Good luck!