Ways of Wellness - Your online support for all things health and wellness!

Welcome to the Ways of Wellness blog! My name is Jon Steuart and I am a physical fitness and nutrition enthusiast. While all of the contents/opinions herein are based on my personal experiences and research over many years, and not any formal education, I am absolutely confident that there will be something for everybody who is interested in improving their physical and mental well-being. Please feel free to leave your comments and questions.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Health and Nutrition Tips - Set S.M.A.R.T. Goals

How many times have you set a goal only to find yourself fall short of achieving it? Look at New Year's Resolutions for example...I would venture to guess that, more times than not, these resolutions, while well intentioned, are never actually met. Why is this? Not because the goals aren't important and not because the goal-setter isn't capable (because they are). Instead, I propose that the main reason people do not succeed at achieving many of the goals that they set is due to not adhering to the S.M.A.R.T. principle.

S - Specific: The goal that one sets needs to be precise and detailed. A goal to "Get fit" is too broad. Instead, a specific goal would be something along the lines of "I am going to join my local gym and workout four days each week".

M - Measurable: If one is to achieve the goal that they have set out for themselves, they will need to have a way of determining their progress toward doing so. A measurable goal would be something like "I am going to lose twenty pounds by summer" or "I am going to eat three servings of fruit each day". Keeping goals measurable allows one to celebrate small successes en route to achieving their larger goal (i.e. losing five pounds) and motivates them toward doing so.

A - Attainable: Goals should be those that one has (or can develop in relatively short order) the skills, knowledge, attitude and ability to achieve. Attainable goals encourage the goal-setter to push themselves in order to succeed.

R- Realistic: One should never set themselves up for failure; therefore, the goal set should be in the realm of "reasonable" or "achievable". This is not to say that they should be easy, but it does mean that goals need to be doable. "I will lose 15 pounds by tomorrow" is not a very realistic goal and does little more than set one up for failure (and experiencing all the negative feelings that it brings with it).

T - Timely: The goal should have a time table associated with it. Without beginning and end dates (deadlines), as well as possible checkpoints or milestones, goals have a tendency of dragging on and on until they fizzle away into nothing. These dates and milestones hold us accountable for progressing toward and ultimately achieving our goal. Example: "I am going to lose 20 pounds by May 1st".

Give it a shot. Try writing your own fitness and nutrition goals.

1 comment:

  1. Really smart tips from you. I analysis of the word 'smart'. It is really interesting. But it is effective and helpful.