Be S.M.A.R.T. When Creating New Lifestyle Changes

Author : Strive Health

With each new lifestyle change, we see see folks who aspire to eat healthier, exercise more and possibly lose weight. Unfortunately, despite being fueled by good intentions, many of these aspirations often lead to extreme dieting measures and workout plans that fall by the wayside within the first few months. Aside from avoiding the fad diets and extreme weight loss plans, one of the key determining factors in achieving changes are setting SMART goals:

S: When setting a goal, be SPECIFIC about what you want to accomplish and narrow down the details as if you would in writing a mission statement. Think of the specifics as an answer to the what, who, where, when and why.

M: The MEASURABLE component of a goal is a direct indicator of what success will look like. Adding quantitative and/or qualitative parameters to a goal helps make it more tangible, provides a way to measure progress, and can be used to determine if or when the goal has been achieved.

A: Another important aspect in goal setting is ensuring a goal is ACTIONABLE. This requires assessing whether you have the right tools in the toolbox to complete the necessary tasks in order to achieve the goal. If not, consider what it would take to attain the tools or rethink the goal to make it more achievable.

R: Similar to making a goal be actionable is ensuring the goal is also REALISTIC. Goals that are out of reach and beyond your capabilities only work to discourage future goal setting. Create goals that set you up for success and are high level but manageable!

T: Lastly, set goals that are TIMEBOUND. Goals without timeframes lack structure and tend to have poorer outcomes in comparison. Setting a deadline not only helps promote motivation and more consistent input of effort, but it has also been shown to improve accountability.

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