Goal Setting: New Year’s Resolutions You Can Accomplish

Posted by: BeneFIT Corporate Wellness
Date: December 30, 2013

For many, setting New Year’s resolutions is an annual tradition―one that starts with a lofty and general goal that’s quickly broken.

Some of the most common resolutions relate to health and wellness: eat healthy food, get fit, lose weight, manage stress and quit smoking. All are worthy, so why does the majority of the population fail to meet these goals? The answer is that they don’t provide any direction (process) on how to achieve results (outcome).

Using S.M.A.R.T. criteria will transform these vague statements into achievable goals:

S―Specific: State your goal as an instruction.

  • What do I want to accomplish?
  • Why do I want to accomplish this?

M―Measurable: Determine how you will see progress and be successful.

  • How do I know that I succeeded?
  • How many steps will it take to achieve success?

A―Attainable: Set a goal that is both meaningful and motivating to you.

  • Do I have the resources necessary to meet my goal?
  • Is the goal neither too hard nor too easy to accomplish?

R―Realistic: Be ambitious, but don’t set yourself up for failure.

  • Can I commit to achieving this goal?
  • Do I have a plan in order to meet the steps required to be successful?

T―Timely: Commit to a time line.

  • When do I need to start?
  • What is my deadline?

Take, for instance, those vague and easily broken resolutions and note how they are rewritten using S.M.A.R.T. criteria. Remember, personal goals should be written based on individual needs, so these should serve as examples only:



Eat healthy food

Replace fatty or sugary snacks with fruits and vegetables over the course of the next two weeks

Get fit

Take a 15 minute walk over the lunch hour when at work with an a goal of gradually increasing the time over the course of the first month

Lose weight

Lose 10 pounds over the next one to two months by exercising four times/week and reducing soda intake

Manage stress

Set realistic deadlines for work completion starting today in order to reduce the instances of stress that occur on a daily basis

Quit smoking

Join a support group and create a realistic timeline for quitting smoking―one that has a “quit date” in the next four weeks

No matter the time of year, following S.M.A.R.T. guidelines enables individuals to write goals that they are more likely to adopt as part of a long-term commitment to better health and wellness.

For more information on incorporating healthy S.M.A.R.T. goals into your lifestyle, please contact us.

Disclaimer: The information presented is for your general knowledge and does not replace the advice of a physician. All medical inquiries regarding your health should be presented to a physician

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