Contributed by – Preksha Buttan
We all want to live a happier life. But how many of us are actually working towards it? Money can surely bring a smile on our face but does it really satisfy the heart? How many of us realize that the simple secret to a happier life is our own health and wellness? Well, a healthy lifestyle will definitely contribute to your happiness and with a healthy mind and body, there is nothing that is unachievable in this world.
Once you have decided to add healthy changes in your lifestyle then it is essential to specify your goals to be able to achieve them. Your health goals can be like losing or gaining weight, improving your strength, clean eating or anything which helps you keep illnesses at bay. While setting these goals you have to make sure that these are practical and something that will add value to your life in the long run. To make your goals achievable, let us discuss a few key points that will guide you in the goal-setting process.
How to set goals?
If your goals are not sensible then you will lack a proper course of action and you will wander off from your motive of being healthy. The SMART goal setting method will give you a direction and make sure that you actually succeed.
Specific – Be very clear while setting your health goals. Specify what your focus point will be. ‘I want to be healthy’ is a long term objective but ‘I want to lose weight’ will help you in finding your direction. When you have clearly defined goals, it will be much easier to achieve them.
Measurable – Make sure you have a way to see your progress. Your goals should be measurable because this will let you monitor your journey. If your goal is to lose weight, add the number of kilos you want you to lose. ‘I want to lose 10 kilos of my weight’ will give a better picture of your progress.
Attainable – Goals are goals only when they are achievable. If you say that you will lose 10 kilos in a week then you are setting an unachievable goal and when you will not succeed, you will become demotivated and will wander off of your path.
Relevant – When your goals are related to your other activities, you will be even more motivated to work on achieving them. If you enjoy trekking, then, being fit will make your trek experience more comfortable and enjoyable. Thus, goals attached to your hobbies or job will keep you engaged.
Time-bound – Every goal should have a time limit. Attach a timeline to all of your targets. Say ‘I will lose 10 kilos in 3 months’ rather than ‘I will lose 10 kilos’. This timeline will help you monitor your progress and you will be able to plan your future course of action.
How to stay focused?
There can be many factors that can work as a distraction. These distractions make it hard to follow the action plan. It is necessary to know how to avoid distractions to be able to focus on your goals and their timely achievement.
Find motivation – Without a reason, your will to add healthy changes into your life will not last long. Find a reason why you want to make certain changes in your lifestyle. This reason will work as your motivational factor and will give a push to work towards your goal consistently.
Plan in advance – If you have decided to do strength training, plan your workout session at least a day before. If you have started running, plan your route a night before. This will save last minute confusion and when you are prepared in advance, you will jump into the routine quickly.
Eliminate distractions – It is very easy to get distracted by things that will not even matter in the long run. Every time you find a distraction remind yourself why you started doing what you started doing. Question yourself what will matter more after 5 years. With time you will find yourself getting less distracted.
Rest – Yes, consistency is important but rest is equally important. Resting will give your mind and body time to recover and prepare for the next day. Without proper rest, your body will have no physical energy to perform the tasks and your mind will lose its ability to make reasonable decisions.
How to overcome obstacles?
Distance yourself from negativity – The most common things around you can work as a negative element without you ever noticing them. If you are trying to wake up early to find time for your morning walk but your family members are in a routine of waking up late, this will quietly work as a negative influence on you and will demotivate you to follow your routine. Create such an environment around you that gives out positivity and motivation.
Ask for help – There will come moments of confusion and doubt. It is not wrong to ask for help. Always approach those who have relevant knowledge about your concerns. Everyone can give inputs but true guidance from an expert can help you in achieving your goals.
Evaluate your situation – Evaluating your current position and your progress will let you know how far you have come in your journey. This evaluation will also tell you the pace at which you are moving towards your goals. Accordingly, you can alter your track and make it more efficient.
Develop a mindset – If you are not mentally ready for the change if you are not mentally prepared to change yourself, if your mind is still holding on to your old lifestyle; then reaching your goals is not possible. Unless you change your mindset, there is nothing that can push you towards your health goals.
This process of planning and staying focused will make your journey towards your health goals a lot easier and enjoyable. Once you are out of your comfort zone, nothing can stop you in your celebration of a healthy lifestyle and a healthy you.
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