As the end of January quickly approaches, we can officially say 2016 is underway. For us in the health industry, this means lots of new goals, resolutions, and motivation have sparked and it’s our personal mission to keep you motivated beyond January, as well as continue to strive our own ambitions, which often include balancing our time between our passion for the health of others, as well as our own. We are all the same – whether we’re an accountant, a mom, or a health professional – we all want to achieve our best and love the idea of a fresh start to renew our intentions.
Habitually, we to strive to achieve similar goals to those we set last year – starting strong and slowly dwindling. This year, let’s decide to do something different. Rather than shooting to put a number on the extra pounds we’d like to shed, or force ourselves to “give up” something that we hear isn’t good for us, let’s choose to take a deep look inside and find what drive us. I’ve put together a few simple steps, as a reminder for you and myself, to choose something truly meaningful and each of us on track for a positive 2016:
- Do rather than Don’t
A resolution shouldn’t start out negative- new goals mean we have renewed reason to think positive. Thinking of things that to take away from or eliminate from life creates a deprived outlook. As soon as we hit a glitch, our comfort becomes the thing that we’ve taken away– like the one reward that will make us feel in control again – even though this if far from rewarding, as the guilt later is draining. Instead of taking away, let’s pick out what makes us feel good – for the right reasons. Rather than saying, “I’m going to stop drinking 3 cups of coffee every morning,” let’s give ourselves the excitement of what we will do. “I’m going to start out with a good nourishing breakfast and a cup of warm lemon water with honey because I know it makes me feel good that I’m starting out my day with great energy.” Once I wake up and nourish my body – I may not crave all that coffee anymore – rather then simply just “giving it up,” I’m going to give myself something to be proud of.
- Choose to be a Winner -Not a Loser
A top goal in the United States is to lose weight. Yes, losing extra weight does improve health- but often times when we fixate on losing, we select the path of least resistance hoping for instant results. Ultimately, we gear towards ineffective, quick solutions, and lose out on long term whole-person health. Psychologically, negative feelings toward weight management, and rollercoaster weight loss and gain back damages mental health, as much as physical. Let’s choose the option that helps us win. Instilling healthy habits into our lifestyles is always a win. Let’s give ourselves a selection of “wins” for our lives and stop fixating on the “losses.” Healthy habits become our norm, and our lives lose room for unhealthy habits. Let’s each select our top 3 healthy habits that we want to stick to (examples: eliminate processed foods 100% from my weekday menu; just move for 30 minutes every morning before getting ready for work to improve my mental attitude first thing; get in bed by 10p every weekend to improve restfulness for my most brain-challenging days). Adding these strategies will adapt our mindset into being a healthier individual, rather then choosing to lose.
- Follow YOUR Happy
Why do we want to be healthy? Ultimately, no matter what the goal, everyone is striving towards living a life where we feel happy. We look to our health, as when we’re healthy and feeling good, we can do more of what makes us happy. While happiness looks different for everyone, the most important part of setting any life-shaping goal is to choose happiness. Let’s think about the 5 things that make us feel the happiest. These could be things we are blessed to have everyday, or things that we strive to add into our lives. Let’s each list our top 5 – then set our goals to include each one of these items. If there are 5 reasons within this goal that bring happiness to our lives, we will continue to work towards each goal with a fullness in our hearts and a smile on our faces. One example, 5 things that make me happy are: traveling to see new places, spending time with my closest friends & family, breathing fresh air, sunshine on my face, and being active. With all of these things in mind, I am going to set a goal to sign up for a half marathon in a place I’d like to visit and I’m going to invite a few friends to join me – whether it be as running partners or as my cheering section. Now I will have a goal I’m running towards-an added bonus to keeping fitness in my routine, an upcoming trip, a reason to stick to my budget, and a memory to look forward to creating.
Now let’s dig into 2016 with a fresh perspective on goal setting and the meaning behind our paths. Remember, You are important. You set your stride. Your goals should reflect a piece of YOURSELF – and the more you give yourself compassion and love, the more you inspire others to do the same. We don’t need a new you (or me) – we just need the you that keeps striving to find your best self. Here we are 2016 – and this year, we strive to shine as our brightest selves!