How to Set Realistic Health & Wellness Goals
A new year also could mean a new you. How do we do it you may ask yourself? How do we actually achieve a goal or set a priority which has been sitting on our subconscious mind for some time? An essential first step is answering a few questions:
- Is what I want to do attainable?
- Is it realistic?
For example, aiming to lose 30 pounds in two weeks may not be doable, therefore, you are setting yourself up for that which is not possible. Disappointment will soon follow if we are expecting the impossible to happen. Some goals may take months or even years to achieve, and that is okay. One small step forward is much more effective over time than two steps forward and ten steps back. Consistency is also key. Once we have found something that we can do like get our finances in order within the next six months, we can then establish a plan. Most of the power of what we actually achieve is in our mind. If we wake up daily with affirmations, gratitude, goals and verbalize them, we most likely will create them!
In terms of health and wellness, let’s look at a few important things to consider. For nutrition and daily habits, how many meals to eat and when to eat them — are questions often asked. And the answers have changed over the years as research has been changing over time. Therefore, nutritional information is always a battle of knowing who to believe and what actually works. Eating in the evening could be limited to specific foods, such as proteins and vegetables. Cutting carbs is wise, but not to the extent that they become a problem which can lead to binging during moments of weakness. As our activity levels decrease and stop during the evening hours/sleep, we don’t need those carbs sitting in our bellies. Carbs which are consumed should be hours before our activity levels increase, not decrease, causing them to most likely be stored as fat. Carbs satisfy instant cravings, but protein satisfies long-term hunger. Portion control is also very important if losing weight or maintaining your current weight is desirable. Try the habit of setting fruits and vegetables out in plain view for children and others in the house to see and reach for. Each meal takes one of the fruits or veggies that are sitting out and cut them up for yourself or others around.
Keeping a food journal can be helpful too for you to be accountable to yourself or a close friend or spouse. Check in one day per week with that person or yourself to see how the prior week went. Don’t use the scale so much as how your clothes fit and how you feel. Remember that muscle weighs less than fat. Therefore, if you are already thin and you increase your muscle mass, you probably feel better, look better, yet weigh slightly more. Don’t worry about or obsess over numbers, stay tuned in to your mental well being.
Diets are usually difficult to maintain because they are rigid or too restrictive which is why it is important to start slow. Over time, gauge how much you want to change and always keep in mind the purpose of your goal. Is it for you? Is it for someone else? Is it from the pressures of social media or because it is dear to your heart? If the answer is, it is for you, go for it. Seek research, a coach, a good book, or your own custom plan, be accountable to someone or yourself, and watch as you begin to see the fruits of the labor that you have worked so hard for. Stay consistent, don’t give up, nothing great comes from something easy. The hardest part is taking the first step. You can do it. Begin today! Why do we need January or a certain day to begin? Start now.