NEW YEAR. NEW YOU.
Ahhh...2017...the start of a new year filled with endless potential and a whole bunch of days to make changes for the better! I like to call it the "Resolution Rush". It's the urge to make positive changes when one thing ends and another begins. It can happen with a change in seasons, a move to a new home, starting a new job, ending a relationship, etc. This time of the year, the Resolution Rush happens because an entire calendar year has ended and a new one has begun. And close to 50% of those who make resolutions, incorporate some sort of health-related focus to their goals. There are also many statistics related to how often people fail at those health-related goals. But let's not focus on those debbie downer stats...instead, I'm here to help make sure you aren't one of those statistics! As a personal trainer for the past 12+ years, owner of 2 fitness studios for 8+ years, and a self-proclaimed "lifelong-exerciser-and-dieter-because-I-like-junk-food-too-much", I've learned A LOT. To help you, I'd like to talk about S.M.A.R.T. goals. Have you heard that term before? What you're saying to yourself right now, if you haven't stopped reading yet, is "yeah, yeah, yeah.....SMART goals, I've heard that before..." BUT, WAIT! I promise you haven't heard my version. I thought the traditional SMART goals could use a makeover so here is my idea of a SMART goal. S = START. As in, start NOW. Don't wait until Monday, or after the kitchen remodel is complete, or after my vacation. That is a bunch of bologna. There will always be some sort of event, project, or other thing that will be an excuse to put things off. If you want to make a change, just flip the switch and decide to start, right here right now. Flip the switch on right this second and decide to START. M=MINUSCULE. As in, set minuscule goals so that you don't set yourself up for failure by going too big. Our belief in our ability to do something will change the quickest with repeated successful attempts. A whole bunch of minuscule goals reached will amount to not only an increase in confidence, but big physical changes in the end. So don't shoot for the mountain peak, start with a MINUSCULE download of the trail map. A=ACCOUNTING. As in, you must account for the goings-on of your journey to reach your goal. You must write it down somewhere, whether its a post-it note, an app, or tattooed on your forehead. You must track the progress and therefore your goal must have objective and measurable tracking components to it. You must account for the components so you can track progress and plan for the future. My accountant gives me a monthly, quarterly, and annual report of my Profit and Loss statements. I don't ask for it, but I'm sure he could do daily and weekly if I asked him to. Sometimes we need some solid-gold proof to show us our successes. I can "feel" that I'm doing a good job running my businesses, but if my accountant hands me a report full of red, it really doesn't matter how I feel I've done. The numbers don't lie. So grab a pen (or download an app if you're under the age of 30) and become an ACCOUNTANT. R=REALISTIC. As in, your goals should be challenging but realistic. Stick to things that are realistic given your circumstances. Set your goal so that it challenges you outside of your comfort zone, but not out of reach. I enjoy a salty snack at the end of my days. A challenging, yet realistic goal for me would be to only have a salty snack at the end of 2 out of 5 weekdays. Making it outside of my comfort zone (only 2 days instead of every day) vs out of reach (no salty snacks at the end of the day ever again). So instead of watching CSI "name-your-city", flip on a reality tv show like Keeping Up with the Kardashians, so you can stay up-to-speed on what is REALISTIC (haha). And lastly, T=TELL PEOPLE. As in, blab it anywhere and everywhere. The more people you tell, the more likely you are to stick to it because you won't want to fail and have others know you failed! Tell your family and close friends, tell your trainer or yoga instructor, or write a facebook post and then pay to boost it into facebook cyberspace! Create a small group of friends that may have similar goals and challenge each other. There are plenty of forums which will manage conversations or health/fitness statistics for your group so you don't have to do so much work. The point here is that most of us hate letting others down because we let ourselves down enough. If you tell others, you might be more motivated to stick to it. #tellpeople. Cheers to you and your successful Resolutions in 2017!