It's the new year, which often gives us renewed motivation to improve our health and wellbeing. But sometimes, we set the bar too high and don’t make realistic goals for ourselves, which can cause us to lose steam. As you think about your health and wellbeing goals for the year, we want to help you get started on the right foot by creating goals that are SMART: sustainable, measurable, attainable, relevant and timely.
Keep track of your goals
Write your goals down on paper and keep them where they are easily seen. When we see reminders of the goals we want to reach, we are more likely to accomplish them.
If goals around exercise are a top priority for you this year, start by taking small steps. If exercise isn’t part of your daily routine, start by setting a goal of doing an activity you love for three to five minutes a day. This could include walking, running, bike riding or anything you find enjoyable. By setting realistic goals, you are more likely to reach them and be motivated to keep going.
Eat regularly. It's tempting to jump into a diet that claims to give you quick results, but those aren’t always the healthiest ways to eat. The best thing you can do for your diet is to eat consistent, well-balanced meals and snacks throughout the day. With a solid foundation of healthy eating, you may find that you’ll feel better in other areas of your health, too.
Rest with ease
Sleep is an important part of your overall health. Without proper sleep, we may find ourselves without the energy we need to perform and be the best version of ourselves. You should get at least seven hours of sleep each night. Try sticking to a regular a bedtime and getting up at the same time every morning. If you are having a hard time sleeping, try reducing your screen time before bed, or talk to your doctor to see if a sleep study could help.
Use the buddy system
Get a friend involved or work with a health coach or dietitian to help keep you accountable to your goals. When you work with others, you can check in with each other to see how close you are to reaching your goals. It helps to get regular reminders about your progress to keep you motivated.
The most important thing to remember when starting new goals is to avoid setting yourself up for failure. As you reach your goals, you can always make them more challenging. By making your goals SMART and achievable, you can help yourself stay motivated and challenge yourself to reach for higher goals.
Posted: January 14, 2022