Resolutions, Goals, and Aspirations
I’ve always hated New Year’s Resolutions, mainly because they so often revolve around broadly-stated goals without meaningful intention (i.e. I want to lose weight, or I want to be happier). When resolutions, goals, or aspirations aren’t clearly defined or given a definitive timeline, we set ourselves up for failure. By setting SMART goals or resolutions, we can ensure that we remain on track.
What are SMART goals? (With an example!)
Specific – Is your goal clearly stated? “I want to eat four ½ cup servings of vegetables per day.”
Measurable – Can you easily measure how well you are sticking with your goal? "I will measure my four servings of vegetables for the first week to ensure that I am meeting my goal."
Attainable – Can you realistically reach your goal? “I will eat four ½ cup servings of vegetables per day” versus, “I want to eat three large salads per day plus four ½ cup servings of other vegetables and fit in 1 ½ hours of exercise every day.”
Relevant – Does this goal bring you closer to your overall goals? “Eating four servings of vegetables each day will help me eat less junk food, be healthier due to the vitamins and minerals in vegetables, and be an inspiration to my family and friends.”
Time-bound – Does your goal fit within a reasonable timeline? “I will eat four ½ cup servings of vegetables per day for a month. After a month, I will increase the servings to five per day for the next month.”
Keeping all of these considerations in mind, start to formulate your goals, resolutions, and aspirations for 2016. Here are five examples to help you get started:
1. I will make time to get up and walk around for 2 minutes out of every hour that I am sitting.
2. I will cook four meals from scratch at home with real food ingredients every week.
3. I will go to bed 30 minutes earlier during the weekdays. I will set an alarm on my phone to remind me that bedtime is approaching.
4. I will journal for five minutes every night before going to bed. I will keep my journal beside my bedside to stay on track.
5. I will go to the gym and strength train for 20 minutes at least one day per week.
These may seem like simple goals, but simple doesn't mean unimportant! Any step that brings you closer to health is a positive step in the right direction.
I’ll post my aspiration on Friday. Hopefully they align with the SMART guidelines!