Most of us know what we should do to be healthier, and it’s easy to tell ourselves things like “I’ll get fitter” or “I’ll lose weight”. These generic goals don’t give us anything tangible to aim for and do no favours for our motivation. A well-thought-out goal is a useful first step in transforming your life and taking control of your health.
The goal “to lose weight” isn’t specific, so you won’t know whether you’ve achieved or not. “I want to lose a stone” is much more helpful, as it gives something concrete to aim for.
The goal “to get fitter” isn’t a bad one but doesn’t mean a lot unless you define what ‘fitter’ means. Consider exactly what you want to achieve and make sure you can measure it. E.g.: “to do 30 minutes of activity 3 times per week” or “to be able to run 5k”.
Striving for an unrealistic goal can be soul-destroying. Make sure your goal is reasonable for you to achieve. You can start small and work your way up, setting a new goal once you’ve reached the first.
You’re more likely to reach goals if they mean something to you and the motivation comes from within. Reflect on what’s important to you: don’t do something because you feel you should or someone else wants you to.
Setting a date is important for knowing whether you’ve reached your goal or not. Without a timescale, it’s easier to let yourself off the hook, so make sure your goal come with a deadline.
Once you’ve set a goal, you’ll need to look back to evaluate whether you achieved it or not.
You can then review whether to rethink the goal, keep reaching for the same one, or set a new one altogether.
Setting a healthy living goal can be daunting. Once you’ve made a SMART goal, planning how you’ll achieve it is an important next step.
Remember our team is here to help: contact us to find out how we can support you with advice, guidance and 1:1 telephone coaching. You can register now for your free healthy living profile to unlock personalised guidance, hints and tips.