C R Y D E R P O I N T 12 JANUARY By Michelle Shapiro, RD No goal was ever accomplished before it was set. In order for people to get to where they need to be, they must first decide where they want to go. A common problem many people have is the inability to picture themselves with what they want and how they want to look and feel. Some initial thoughts are typically, “I could never lose that weight,” or “I am so ashamed I let myself go.” It is too frequent that people new to a health journey find themselves discouraged by their current condition instead of excited by their future. Health improvement comes from people asking the right questions, holding themselves accountable and, most importantly, celebrating every single accomplishment. Question # 1: Where do you want your health journey to take you? Take the next minute or so to create an overall vision for yourself. What would you look like as your happiest, healthiest self? What would you be doing and how might it feel? Take out a pen and paper and write down your overall vision. Keep that vision at the front of your mind in everything you do to help keep your actions close to your future goal. Next time you think, “Should I order pizza or a salad?” your vision will help guide your decision. Setting Goals for a Healthier (and Lighter!) New Year Question # 2: How are you going to get there? Everyone struggles with making changes for different reasons. For some people, the reason may be a lack of motivation. For others, it may be a physical boundary. Here’s an example: Person A and Person B both want to lose weight by exercising more. Person A can’t go to the gym because of their work schedule; Person B doesn’t go to the gym because of other priorities, such as socializing. A solution can be found for any obstacle. Your jobs in this step are to a identify your barrier and b find a way around it. Once you have figured out what has been holding you back from your best you, the most important thing to do is to set one-week goals. Goal-setting is vital for making and maintaining healthy changes. Instead of setting a goal such as “I will exercise more,” be sure to be as specific as possible and change your goal to, “I will exercise on Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 7:00am this week for 60 minutes each time.” The point of making specific goals is so that you know, definitively, whether you have accomplished it or not. It is hard to stay on track with ambiguous goals. Take a few minutes to think of two oneweek goals for the next seven days for which you will hold yourself accountable. Make the goals something you know you can accomplish. These 12 cryder point courier | JANUARY 2016 | WWW.QNS.COM few minutes could be the difference between two completely different health paths that you set yourself on. Most importantly, during this time, keep your overall vision of yourself in mind. Every goal you set should bring you closer to that vision. Question # 3: What will you do after you complete your goals? CELEBRATE! The most successful people in the world don’t harp on their failures but rather revel in their successes. If a person sets a goal to exercise three times a week and only ends up exercising once, that is an accomplishment, because it is one hour closer to their vision. Think of how you might treat a friend if they shared with you that they had completed a goal they set. Use that same positive mind frame, that same courtesy and kindness with yourself. Be your own best friend on your journey to health--you’re the only person with you every moment on this path! Be proud, grateful and gentle with yourself. You have all the resources within you to make the changes necessary to live the life you imagined in your overall vision. Make your vision, identify your barriers, find the way around them, set your goals and smile widely when you win! And remember, if you are planning a diet or health change, it may be beneficial to contact a Registered Dietitian or MD.
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