I believe in resolutions. I actually get excited about the whole resolution-setting process.
Before I work on my new resolutions, I reflect on the previous year. What did I want to accomplish? Was I successful? I don’t dwell on the past, but I think it’s important to understand how we got here. Some years, my best intentions go awry early. Other years, I blow my resolutions away.
In 2014, I resolved to race more. When I publicly announced this, a friend outed me on Facebook with “That’s not a very SMART goal, Nicole!” I had betrayed the cardinal rules of goal-setting! For best results, goals should be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time Bound. To take it a step further, a goal should be focused on yourself (not your spouse or kids!), and it should be positive, not, as a therapist-friend described it to me, “a dead-man’s goal.” A good example of a dead-man’s goal is “I can’t eat anything bad this year.” Well then what the heck CAN you eat? Focus on what you can or will do; not what you can’t or won’t do.
To SMARTen my 2014 resolution, I specified – one race a month. It didn’t matter how fast I went, just that I went. I will admit that I didn’t do twelve events in 2014, but I came close with ten. This was one of the best goals I’ve ever set because I was able to check in on it every month. It held me accountable to something.
For 2015, I started by asking my parents about their resolutions. My mom said, “I think, we should try to do a date night every week.” My dad, with his eye on the television, deflected with, “This is turning out to be a great game.” To which my mom said, “And the date should be centered on what the other person would like to do – not a high school football game or something like that!” I gently suggested that may not be the SMARTest resolution. After they got their bearings, they came up with a few good ones including “improve my posture,” and “enunciate better,” both of which still needed a little SMART-sizing but I can only help my parents so much. ?
After warming up with my folks, I turned to myself. I decided to tackle my health and fitness goal in a different way this year. I’m going to challenge my eating habits.
Whoa – big statement! Here’s the problem I’m trying to solve. I’ve been eating the same since I was in my 20s, but my body and physiology are clearly different at 42. Plus, I don’t train 25 hours a week anymore and I still eat like I do! I also have a vague feeling that I may have some food allergies or sensitivities, but I’ve never taken the time to figure out what that means. Now is the time. 2015 will be my year of eating experimentation! My goal is not to lose weight. It is to feel energized, more balanced, and cleaner.
I am still working out the SMART strategy for this goal and I could use your help to get there. The list is overwhelming: Vegan, gluten-free, Mediterranean, Zone, Paleo, Atkins, acid-alkaline, and on and on. Let me know what you’ve tried and why it has worked for you or not. If anyone is interested in joining me on my 2015 eating resolution, chime in now and I’ll make 2015 the year of eating experimentation in public with friends.
Now that I’ve shown you mine, it’s your turn to show me yours. What are your SMART resolutions this year?
Categorised in: General