When you want to make healthier changes in your life, it helps to set SMART goals.
A SMART goal helps you break things down into bite-sized pieces - Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely.
Specific – A goal should be focused and direct. “I want to eat better” is a good start, but how will you get there? Will you eat more vegetables, get enough protein, decrease how much soda you drink? Remember to be specific.
Measurable – Often, by phrasing the goal in a way that is measurable, you can make it more specific. “I will eat two cups of vegetables every day”. Seems more doable now, right?
Attainable – You want the goals you set to be in reach. There's nothing wrong with high expectations, but you should be realistic as well.
Relevant – Saying you will also ride your bike three times a week is great, but don’t blur the lines. Be relevant to your overall goal of eating better and don't overwhelm yourself.
Timely – How will you know you have met your goal? When does it switch from “I want to do this” to “I do this”? Set a time frame for re-evaluation! “By the the 15th...”, “by next Tuesday…”, “by Memorial Day, I will…” etc.
Now, our original goal of “I want to eat better” has turned into “By the first weekend in April, I will eat two cups of vegetables every day.”
SMART goals are a great way to take a large idea and break it down into smaller, more manageable steps, ultimately leading to greater long term success.
Schedule an appointment with a Registered Dietitian, Exercise Physiologist, or Health Coach at one of our LiVe Well Centers. They will support you in creating SMART goals that are important to you.