How To Kick Some Serious Goal Butt in 2019: What’s The Secret?
We are halfway through January already…it’s practically Easter!! Kidding..although there are way too many hot cross buns out there already, don’t you think? Anyhoo…..speaking of hot cross buns, how are those new year goals working out for you?
We asked Liz Sparkes of Simply Fitness Southern Highlands to share her secrets to kicking goals. It seems to be all in the planning and in the WAY we set our goals. So if some of your health, fitness and wellbeing goals are looking a little wishy washy at the mo….check out the approach Liz takes to dig a little deeper and really get us to connect to our goal. No Jedi mind tricks required!
Take it away, Liz...
Admit it. You’ve got at least one resolution you’ve sworn you are absolutely positively going to achieve this year! It certainly is the season to re-evaluate certain elements of your life and areas you want to improve on, but unless we have a strategy in terms of how the goal will be achieved, we run the risk of failure and giving up.
So, let’s talk strategy! Sounds like a word more at home in the boardroom than in a gym but a strategy is pretty much a road map to get from A to B. Stuff sadly doesn’t just happen because you want it to. Bummer.
Here's the approach I take with my clients when establishing goals:
- State the goal: be loud and proud about it!
- Understand the goal: why is it so important to you?
- What are the consequences of achieving the goal? Yippee!
- What are the consequences of not achieving the goal? Hmmmmmm.
I often hear this goal. “I want to lose five kilograms.” I ask the client why five kilograms? A lot of the time, clients can’t answer that question. Is five kilos just the magic number that’s bandied around a fair bit, so they run with that? By digging a little further, we often get to where it’s coming from.
“I want to fit into my black dress for a wedding.”
Aaah. Now, we are getting somewhere. I then ask the client to visualise how they will feel if that goal is achieved. Like a million bucks, right? Then I ask the more confronting question around how it would feel if they didn’t achieve their goal. This is usually a sense of disappointment and frustration, as now another dress would have to be chosen, and they won’t feel that great in their second choice.
Here’s another example from a second, hypothetical client. This client is keen to lose up to 30 kilograms. Quite a significant amount of weight. Again, I follow the same line of questioning and the exercise may go something like this:
Why do you want to lose 30 kilograms?
Because my doctor told me to.
I guess my overall health is being affected. And my back and knees hurt more than they used to.
What aspects of your health do you feel are being affected?
I get out of breath more easily. I don’t move as well, and the chance of diabetes and other conditions are increased at the moment.
Let’s say we shift the weight. How do you feel?
Elated, lighter, more energetic, able to keep up with the kids. I look better and my self-confidence is back.
And how do you feel if we don’t achieve it?
This exercise helps clients to fully understand why they have that particular goal. When you understand why you actually want what you want then you stand a way better chance of getting it. Acknowledge it, then own it.
Moving on from here an important step now is to identify those barriers to your success. There are plenty, but common ones include:
- Work schedule (either the clients or their partners’)
- Kids schedule
- Too tired
- Can’t afford it
- My knees hurt.
And the list goes on.
By addressing obstacles from the outset, you can develop tactics to overcome them. When they no longer present a barrier to you achieving your goal, there’s no excuses. So if your work schedule makes it tricky to find a time for exercise, you can do an early morning session, or workout on the weekend or perhaps your employer would be open to you starting earlier in the day with the view to leave earlier for some exercise.
Have a plan beforehand and arm yourself with a solution instead of getting derailed at the first hurdle.
Setting and realising goals can be very challenging in our busy lives. But with the correct preparation and understanding why you want to get to point B, it is more than possible. The old adage of failing to plan is a plan to fail is no truer than when it comes to self-improvement. Good luck!