Let me ask you something. What is the first thing you do when trying to reach a destination that you have never been to before? If your smart, you will look at a map or “Google it” before you leave to reduce your chances of getting lost along the way. What makes your destination to health any different? Setting goals can act as a map for you to follow and analyze how far you have come. Start by identifying where you are now and where you want to be. Then fill in the gaps by setting small easily reachable goals so you have a guide to help you reach your main ultimate goal! It’s time that you figure out where you are going.
Long-term goals are easy. I want to lose weight, have more energy, eat better, be stronger, etc. That’s great! But, let’s talk about how you are planning to get there. Short-term realistic goals should be set to ensure you achieve them quickly to gain motivational momentum.
No more leaps and bounds , now is the time to make small changes that will lead to big changes. Yes, it will take you longer to reach your ultimate goal but, you WILL reach that goal and be able to hold onto it for a lifetime instead of just a moment in time.
The key is to not put too much on your plate at one time. Think of one or two short term goals per week. Then focus on how you are going to achieve them. If you’re really serious about achieving your goals, make them SMART ones. To create S.M.A.R.T goals, you will need to include each of the following components:
You must state your goal as specifically as possible. Try to put as much decision work into your goal now. Set the goal “lose 20 pounds” instead of “lose weight”. But you can do even better. Try “Lose 20 pounds by increasing my exercise to 4 times a week and reducing sugar and portion size”. Have your goal be like an instruction telling you what to do.
OK, so let’s say you have set a specific goal and have started making positive changes in your life toward achieving it. How do you how well you are doing? Measuring your progress is as important as setting the goal in the first place. A measurable goal is going to give you proof of progress. This leads to greater motivation and greater motivation leads to success.
Ask yourself: How much weight do you want to lose? How quickly do you hope to lose the weight? How are you going to measure your progress to achieve this goal?
Please don’t set yourself up for failure. Really take a look at your life and determine whether or not you are being fair to yourself with the time frame and strategy to reach this goal. Make sure there is room for growth too. For example, if your plan is to reduce your caloric intake and you are a soda drinker. Reducing those empty calories can be a great way to cut back on your caloric intake. Instead of completely eliminating soda from your diet, first try cutting it back to three times a week, then twice a week, then maybe only one on Saturdays. Pretty soon you will not want it anymore. Give your self a chance!
Ideally, you would want to return to your high school weight, but you know losing 30 pounds in the next 8 weeks would be unrealistic. You know that 7 pounds lighter you’ll feel much better and more easily fit into your favorite pair of jeans or dress. Be real!
Using dates and times as measurements toward successful completion of your goal is critical. That also means building in a reward system: A massage, a getaway weekend, or whatever makes you happy and keeps you motivated to stay on track.
4 Additional Tips for reaching your Goals
1. Understand your challenges. If you don’t actually know what’s stopping you, how can you overcome it! Determine those obstacles- is it time, fear, commitment?
2. Know your limitations. Time, accessibility, and opportunity may not always be within your reach. Realize that you may have to carve out time or divide your time, gain access to tools needed and give yourself the opportunity.
3. Don’t be afraid to ask for help! Mamas- stop assuming we can do it all- delegate and ask for help when you need it. Ask a professional for help in areas that you value the investment.
4. Have a plan B. Sometimes your original plan may just not work- that’s okay. Learn to be flexible. You may need to try a few different plans before that aha moment!
How Mamas Move can help:
Personal Wellness Training, Transformation Boot Camp, Parenting 101- Taking back Control Workshop Series, and simply, a membership- because our membership truly has privileges!