It can be hard to keep a healthy lifestyle when we lead busy lives. We often set out to change our unhealthy ways but life can get in the way and even if we make progress, it can sometimes fall to the wayside despite all good intentions. The problem tends to be in our inability to see the importance of the small steps and the impatience we can feel in getting there.
Setting clear goals in all areas of our life is key to successfully achieving what we want and this is also applied to gaining a healthy lifestyle. Change can feel hard especially when we’re busy but here are the main benefits to setting clear goals and the importance they have on achieving a healthier you.
1. Clear Goals Help Set Our Purpose
Being too vague about our health goals can lead us to give up easily. Telling yourself ‘I’m going to start walking’ isn’t enough but making it clear and specific like ‘I’m going to walk 10,000 steps each day for the next two weeks’ will give you an incentive to keep up the practice.
2. Utilises Our Time Efficiently
By setting a clear goal, it makes it easier to fit the activity into our every day life. If you’re going to walk 10,000 steps a day then you need to plan when you can ideally achieve it. By having a clear goal, you are more focused and forced to consider how you will incorporate this in each day, for example, parking the car further away from work, taking the stairs instead of the elevator or planning for a walk after dinner in the evening.
3. Clear Goals Equals Faster Results
Time frames are created more easily when we set clear goals which results in consistency. Consistency is the key to achieving any goal in our life because it means we get faster results and that satisfies our impatient tendencies. By setting clear goals and time frames, our efforts become more focused and therefore more likely to stay on the path to successfully reaching our goals.
4. Allows Us To Keep Track Of Our Progress
Tracking progress is essential for reaching our health goals. Whether we are keeping track using an app or crossing off each day with good old pen and paper, it helps us see how well we are doing and how far we’ve come. This in itself creates incentive and a sense of achievement that can only be possible with clear set goals. By setting clear goals we are laying down the path we need to follow which will make it much easier with each step. A hundred miles can only be achieved with each individual step and it’s these steps that we need to focus on rather than the end goal.
5. Helps Us Achieve A Positive Mindset
By having a clear goal, we have something to strive for and, in turn, this helps us to feel more optimistic because having clear goals causes us to feel less stressed and lessens the feelings of failure we put on ourselves. Having a clear focus allows us to feel like we have control over our lives and creates a positive mindset that’s crucial for achieving our goals.
We’ve all heard of S.M.A.R.T goals but they are a good guide to setting your goals and making them as clear, realistic and attainable as possible.
- SPECIFIC: Make your goal clear rather than general. This will help you focus on the small steps needed to achieve the end goal.
- MEASURABLE: Set measurements for your goals. Decide on certain actions and how much you want to achieve your goal on each day or week.
- ACHIEVABLE: Always make your goals easy and attainable. If you make them too ambitious then you are more likely to fail and not stick with it – remember small achievable goals for success.
- REALISTIC: Make sure you are able to carry out the steps needed to reach your goal. If you set an intention to train for a marathon when you work 12 hours a day, it will make it hard to keep up. Make sure your goal matches up with both your time commitments and also your ability.
- TIMELY: Set good timeframes instead of general intentions. Putting a date on your goals give them accountability and focus.