You’ve decided to take charge of your weight and health. You’re ready to begin a new journey! For just a moment, think about the wishes and goals that are running through your mind when you think about the future. Do any of these sound familiar?
- I want to drop (“X”) pounds
- I hope I can lose (“X”) pounds by _____ (this date)
- I just want to fit into my “skinny” jeans!
If so, you’re not alone. So many people who set out to lose weight are very focused on the details. The number on the scale or the size of their clothes holds a lot of power. These are common feelings, but they can also make healthy goal-setting extremely difficult.
Long-term Goal Setting
Instead of focusing on numbers that don’t tell you much, focus on the total picture of your health. What are some of your long-term goals? How do you want to feel mentally, and physically, a year from now?Two years from now? A decade from now?
Here are some examples of powerful long-term goals:
- Being able to do a challenging new fitness activity, like rock climbing
- Having the energy to chase your kids or grand kids around the yard
- Going off medication for a chronic health condition
- Feeling confident in clothes that match your personality
- Building your own complete cookbook of healthy recipes
- Conquering a big fear, like running or walking a 5K
Now it’s your turn to set some long-term S.M.A.R.T. goals. Give this process at least half an hour and turn them into your “Wellness Wish List.” This list should focus on the quality of your life instead of what the scale says or how you look in a form-fitting outfit.
The Power of a Wellness Wish List
With these goals in mind, start planning how you’ll achieve them. Will you aim to exercise at least 30 minutes more each day? Will you commit to eating more meals at home? Will you work closely with your physician, a counselor or a nutritionist? Open your mind to the possibilities and what tools might help you find success.
A wellness wish list helps you focus on what matters. Years from now, you won’t look back and wish you weighed (“X”) pounds. You’ll think back on time you spent with family, vacations you’ve taken and milestones you’ve accomplished. Having these goals in mind right now will inspire you to keep working hard for them.
SMART goals give you something to look forward to. They keep you on-track. They’re easy to measure and revise as needed. By creating your own wellness wish list, you can focus on the things that truly matter!