While many people feel like the start of 2017 is this fresh new slate, I started January 1st like any other day. It’s not because I don’t care about the whole “new year new you” mindset that comes with every new year. In fact, I love goal-setting, refocusing on what’s most important, and creating new habits to make my life better.
But, this new year was different for me. And the reason why is because unlike most people who looked at what they did in 2016 and tried to make a 180 degree change in 2017, I had been creating, adjusting, and achieving goals every day, week, and month leading up to 2017. I didn’t wait until a new year to create the change I wanted.
I made a conscious decision to continually reflect and adapt my daily habits and rituals to coincide with who I wanted to be and what I wanted to achieve.
The act of goal-setting is something that most people forget to do. And when they do remember to do it, they don’t do it correctly or have a means to follow up with their progress. They simply set a goal because they’re “supposed to,” but end up forgetting, giving up, or failing altogether.
Goal-setting has completely changed the course of my life. I’ve been able to accomplish so many things in the last 3 years. From earning paid-for trips to 4 different countries thanks to Beachbody Coaching, to starting my own online fitness business, to being able to fully fund my retirement accounts, I really feel like I’ve gotten a grasp of how to set goals in each area of my life and demolish them.
Now, it’s really no secret. There are so many personal development gurus who have written books, recorded videos, and have sold online courses to literally teach you how to effectively set goals. In fact, if you want to learn more about goal-setting, my favorite go-to speakers and thought leaders specifically for this topic are Brian Tracy, Darren Hardy, Tony Robbins, and Chalene Johnson to name a few.
But, I want to give you my own personal tips that have helped me. Plus, I’ll also share with you my goals for 2017 below.
1 | CREATE 7-10 GOALS FOR EVERY AREA OF YOUR LIFE
There are so many facets to your life other than nutrition and fitness. You need to make sure that you are balancing your focus in different areas to truly create overall happiness. For example, having 18% body fat just isn’t worth it if you’re bankrupt, living in filth, and haven’t seen your family or friends in weeks, right?
The recommended aspects of life that you should set goals for are as follows:
- Relationship w/ Spouse/Significant Other
- Personal Growth
2 | CREATE SMART GOALS
SMART goals is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-Bound. For example, a DUMB (no acronym, just dumb) goal is to “be healthier.” I mean…what does that even mean? Does that mean choosing Fat-Free Oreos versus regular Oreos? Does that mean choosing Diet Coke versus margaritas? There is absolutely no specificity, no measure, we don’t know when it’s actually accomplished, and there’s no deadline to get this ambiguous goal completed.
A SMART goal would be to lose 10lbs in 6 weeks by doing cardio and strength training at the gym 3x a week. That’s a SMART goal. Why? It gives us specificity. We know how to measure it. Losing 10lbs in 6 weeks is definitely attainable and realistic. And, we have a deadline.
Here is an example of how to create a SMART goal for each area of your life listed in Step 1:
- Health: To lose 10lbs in 6 weeks by eating one raw salad a day
- Fitness: To lose 10lbs in 6 weeks by going to the gym 3x a week
- Finances: Saving $100 each month to put towards a girls vacation
- Environment: To declutter the apartment a little bit each day
- Relationship: Have one date night each week
- Family: FaceTime my family at least 2x a month to catch up
- Spiritual/Religious: Meditate 10mins daily
- Career/Purpose: To get Precision Nutrition certified by April to further my education
- Fun/Leisure: To do one fun activity for pure joy like dancing, art, or acting at least 1x a month
- Personal Growth: read or listen to one personal growth book a month
- Quick Note: Now some of the goals I listed above might not have all of the attributes of a SMART goal. And that’s totally fine. That just means that part of your life has less priority or less weight at the moment, and that’s okay. As long as you’re creating SMART goals (for the most part), in each aspect of your life, you will be more likely to achieve it.
3 | HAVE AN ACTION PLAN
You must take action! The reason why New Years Resolutions don’t work is because the goal of “getting healthier” doesn’t lead you to any action steps! With whatever SMART goal you created, whip out a piece of paper with some ACTION steps that you can take in the next day, week, and month to help you achieve this goal. For example:
- Joining an online challenge group (ahem, feel free to ask when my next one starts!)
- Getting a gym membership
- Buying a book about clean eating
- Subscribing to an online workout or membership site
- The list can go on. Simply put, have action steps that you can start immediately to get the ball rolling.
4 | GET ACCOUNTABILITY
Whether it’s a friend, boyfriend/girlfriend, coworker, or online coach, get accountability to stay on track! Even I (yes, me, someone who holds other people accountable), needs accountability. In fact, my clients in my Challenge Groups are my ultimate accountability! They count on me to show up every day, and half the time I’m doing the workouts just to show THEM I did it! It’s actually a HUGE reason why I decided to make fitness my career. When I wasn’t in fitness, I STRUGGLED with getting myself to the gym. It was such a chore for me. But when I got hired as a fitness instructor, I was forced (and fortunately paid!) to workout…even if I didn’t feel like it! Find accountability so that you can stay on track when the going gets tough.
5 | REVISIT YOUR GOALS DAILY
If you walked into my apartment, you’d find countless journals of scratch paper with my goals written over and over and OVER again!!! It sounds repetitive, and maybe stupid, but revisiting my goals and re-writing them help my subconscious mind to stay focused on what I need to do to accomplish them. I am constantly revisiting and revising my goals and am always creating To Do lists that align with them. I challenge you to buy a journal and start writing your goals daily. If not daily, weekly. Doing it on your phone doesn’t count either. There’s something about putting pen to paper that solidifies it in your brain that much more.
My Goals For 2017
With all that said, I want to share with you my goals for 2017.
- Achieve 18% body fat by 2018 by doing the Body Beast weightlifting program 5-6 days a week
- Become a Beachbody Master Trainer and host 1-2 workshops this year
- Get Precision Nutrition certified to further my education
- Continue to declutter my apartment using the Kondo method (Highly recommend the book “The Life-Changing Magic Of Tidying Up”
- Surprise Markus on a date night or fun activity every month
- FaceTime family at least 2x a month to stay updated on their lives
- Meditate at least 10 mins a day
- Read/Listen to one personal growth book a month and attend 1-2 conferences this year
- Fully fund my retirement accounts, 401K, and save enough $$$ for an awesome vacation this year