Hello Heathy Readers! It’s been a bit since I last posted because I was focused on reaching a goal I had set for myself! After a few decades, I finally got recertified as a personal trainer! It required a few months of study, a lot of focus, and a rather crazy end story concerning my final exam, but I passed with flying colors and can now tuck that long term goal away in my “accomplished” folder.(if curious, you can read about my crazy exam issue at the end of this post) All of this got me thinking about how we go about setting and, hopefully, reaching all those goals as we travel through life. Whether your goal is related to work, school, health or hobbies, having a clear-cut plan to reach your goal is the key. Why do some people reach their goals, while others just seem to talk about, or wish for, their goals to be completed-but never seem to make progress? The difference is all in the approach!
The very first thing we need to do when setting goals is to be very clear on what the end goal is-what does it look like in your life? How will it affect your life? Does the end goal make you excited? Is it a priority in your future? Is it a priority now? Defining your goal is the first step to reaching it-but be sure to define it clearly and concisely. Take a few minutes to write your goal down and consider making your goal public as well. Saying your goal out loud to the people around you can keep you accountable, and even elicit encouragement and support.
Next, make sure your goal is a SMART goal! SMART is an acronym for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time Based.
SPECIFIC: Be sure that your goal is specific and detailed. Instead of setting a goal to “get fit” think more detailed. Consider setting a more specific goal that involves being fit, like running a certain distance, participating in an athletic endeavor, or lifting a certain amount of weight. This provides you with an end result that proves accomplishment!
MEASURABLE: How will you measure your success as you reach for your goal? Breaking your goal into small measurable pieces will keep you motivated and inspire you to continue on! Measurable mini goals are the small steps that lead you to big changes! Instead of aiming for a giant goal like “lose 25 pounds” all at once, break that goal into small goals, perhaps 5 pounds at a time. Each time your reach a small goal, celebrate yourself and aim forward to the next!
ATTAINABLE: Be sure your goal is possible yet somewhat challenging. I once knew someone that always said that their goal in life was to win the lottery. However, in a 10 year period, they never once bought a lottery ticket! That’s not a goal-that’s a wish or a dream! Make sure your goal is something you CAN do with work and WILL do with focus!
RELEVANT: Align your goal with your abilities and life. Be sure that your goal leads you to a more positive and happy existence and leaves you feeling accomplished and proud. Your goal should keep you inspired and motivated as you work towards it and mean something to your current life.
TIME BASED: Your goal should fit a timeline and have an ending date. Not having a time frame in mind for accomplishing your goal can leave you in a state of procrastination with a lack of focus.
Now that you made sure your goal is SMART, it’s time to plan it out. I’m a planner; I’m such a planner, I sometimes get so exhausted planning HOW I will do something, I find myself needing to take a break from my plans to regain my inspiration! That said, the plan you put in place does not have to be set in stone, or even incredibly detailed. Think of this as an “outline” of how you will reach your goal. Break it down into small steps and give yourself props as you reach those milestones along the way. This will keep both your focus and your inspiration high.
Once your goal is outlined, decide how often you will take the steps needed to reach it. Will this be a daily journey? A weekly task? How much time will you devote to achieving the goal? Next-put it physically on your schedule! Block time out on your calendar, create reminders, and treat this timeslot as you would any other appointment or job. This is YOUR time; this is time for accomplishing your goal. Treat it with respect, importance, focus, and honor this time as an investment into yourself.
Consider finding support and accountability as you progress towards your goal. Telling others your plan will make it more real. Discussing your goals and the steps you need to take with others may offer you new ideas or perspective as well. Finding others that may share your goal can be incredibly helpful with support, knowledge, motivation, or inspiration.
Set up time to evaluate your process, celebrate your accomplishments, and make changes to any steps that may need it. Ask yourself: What worked for me? What didn’t work for me? What might need tweaking? How can I approach this differently? What can I do to make this process simpler? Remember-the journey that leads us to our goals is often as important as the goal itself.
Reaching our goals requires patience, planning, focus, and drive. Finding the right mindset is very important in this process. Surround yourself with positive support and vibes, develop a plan for any possible setbacks, and whatever you do-DON’T GIVE UP! Keep your eye on the prize, take small steps with diligence and care, and you will WIN!
Many of our goals involve our health and wellness. If you are looking for support, knowledge, education, and experience with planning and reaching your goals in nutrition, fitness, habits, stress levels, meal planning, or any other facet of your ultimate wellness, reach out to me to chat about how I can help you better reach your goals. Be sure to check out other articles on my blog for detailed health hacks, recipes, motivation and more.
*As promised-the crazy final exam story: I spent 6 months studying, opened the final exam and instantly saw questions about subject matter that was NOT addressed in my program. I contacted the school to discover after several long, confusing phone calls, that while I had been given, and studied, edition 9 of the text-the school gave me the edition 10 final exam. They sent me pdfs of the addition subject matter (175 pages!) and told me to do my best.
I waded through the additional materials, made some sense of it, took notes, and reopened the exam. As I answered question 100 out of 200, my phone rang…..The student advisor apologized and told me they had upgrade my course to edition 10….but in doing so-canceled out my entire exam and I had to START OVER…
Goal accomplished tho!!
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