I say this all the time, resolutions are personal goals on steroids.
They are often far reaching, lofty, unmeasurable, and lack action. Resolutions often take on importance based on the very things that are normally the most neglected in our lives. They are usually the bigger picture of much smaller steps and actions required to achieve the resolution itself. But I beg you to ask yourself, “What if my resolution were actually attainable, measurable, more specific, and timely? Would I actually meet them this year?”
As an expert in the health field, I use a simple tool to fine tune goals. It’s actually an acronym-S.M.A.R.T. Goals or Resolutions.
Specific. Measurable. Action-based. Realistic. Time bound.
This tool, among many more, can act as a checklist for your goals or resolutions. Here’s an example of popular resolutions I’ve heard time and again:
- I will lose weight.
- I will eat healthier.
- I will make more time for family.
- I will leave work at work.
- I will decrease my stress.
- I will have better work and life balance.
That all sounds amazing doesn’t it? But are these SMART? Do they specifically answer the questions of Who, What, When, Where and How? Of course not. So let’s see how this could look if we SMARTen things up a bit.
If this were my resolution this is how I could improve it….
I will lose weight.
Who? Me, and my health coach will hold me accountable.
How? Through regular exercise at the gym or hotel gym when I’m traveling, and meal prepping more consistently versus eating out.
What? 10lbs feels realistic and I am going to measure body weight loss.
When? Daily, by end of 2020.
Where? At home, at work, and when traveling — my life.
So now my resolution just became….
By the end of 2020, I will lose 10lbs through daily habits of routine exercise and healthy, prepped meals by which my health coach will hold me accountable.
- “I will decrease my stress” could then become…”I will cultivate a meditation of 10 minutes daily with my wife by the end of June.”
- “I will make more time for my family” could then become….”I will be eating dinner with my family consistently, four times a week by the end of March.”
Can you meet yourself where you really are and SMARTen up up your resolutions? How will you know until you try?
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– CASEY EDMONDS, CHC
Health Advisor | Email Casey