Chamber Insider Blog

S.M.A.R.T. New Years Resolutions

Post written by Matt Plummer, ViSalus, Healthy Business Initiative Committee

It’s been estimated that come January 1st, one in three Americans will vow to make some lofty changes to better their lives.  We’ve all heard them before — exercise more, reduce stress, eat better, quit smoking…  

With the New Year upon us, many of us will will resolve to make this coming year the year we finally lose the extra weight and recommit to health and fitness.  But, unfortunately, approximately 90% of us will fail because our goals are not S.M.A.R.T.  Meaning, they’re not Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-related.  Crafting a S.M.A.R.T. resolution is the key to success.  So, let’s get started…

First, Be Specific.  “I want to lose weight,” or “I am going to pay off debt” are broad, general wishes.  How will you know when you’ve succeeded? Use definitive statements and put specific numbers to them: “I will lose 30 pounds,” or “I will pay off $25,000 of debt.”

Make them Measurable.  Again, tracking is the ultimate key in achieving any goal.  If you are setting a goal to lose weight, devices like FitBit or Garmin make excellent tracking products.  Apps like MyFitnessPal, Nike+, and Challenge Mobile are free and easy to use.  Also, daily journaling can be helpful. For example, keep a journal with pictures and measurements, your daily food intake, and physical activity for weight loss.  If one of your resolutions is pertaining to work and you’re in sales, keep a journal of calls, appointments, and presentations.  This is vital to your success.

Make them Achievable.  What info or knowledge do you need to know to achieve your resolution?  Do you already know how to do it?  Do you need to find or hire a mentor?  Or, is it something crazy?  For example, do you need a two year’s masters program to achieve your goal?  If so, you’re probably not going to achieve that resolution this year… right?  Make sure the resources are readily and easily accessible for you to achieve your goal.

Make them Realistic.  What is possible?  Can you quit smoking or drinking in a year?  Can you lose 50 or 100 pounds?  The answer is yes, but what is your current environment?  Be realistic with yourself — you may have to quit a few things or disengage from certain people in order to achieve your goal. Are you realistic about making those sacrifices?

Make them Time-Specific.  A goal or resolution with no date is a wish!  Assign a timeline or a date (i.e. 90 days, 6 months, June 1st, Thanksgiving etc.) Work backwards from the date to establish targets (Daily, Weekly and Monthly) and focus on the daily habits to achieve those targets.  

Here’s a fun pointer from personal experience: Set a massive, SMART goal and focus on the small daily habits and disciplines to achieve the goal. Also, assign a pain OR a pleasure if you do/don’t achieve the goal.  Here’s an example:

  • Pleasure:  I commit to losing 20 lbs in 90 days.  If I do, I will treat myself to a $500 shopping spree using all the money I have saved from not eating out.
  • Pain: I commit to losing 20 lbs in 90 days.  If I don’t, I will write a check for $500 to (insert person that you strongly disagree with).

So, if losing weight is one of your New Year’s Resolutions in 2016 — here’s an example of a strong, SMART resolution: 

“I will lose 30 lbs by June 1st.  I have downloaded The Challenge Mobile and bought a FitBit to track and monitor my results.  I have joined The Project 10 Challenge and will use the Vi community and social media as support.  I will hire a personal trainer by April 1st to help me with my weight loss.  When I lose 30 lbs., I will treat myself to a round of golf with my 3 best friends, and then a dinner with my spouse and a night on the town.”

Sounds pretty doable (and, not so bad), right?  Best wishes for a happy and healthy new year!

-Written by Matt Plumer, ViSalus

 

Want to Learn More?

– Join Our Committee!  The Chamber’s Health & Wellness Committee is a dedicated group of local professionals with a passion for wellness!  We spearhead the Annual Healthy Business Challenge and equip chamber members with important health-related information and valuable wellness resources.  Our goal is to engage employers, convey the importance of wellness in the workplace, and cultivate a thriving, healthy community.  Come see what we’re all about – we meet on the 3rd Wednesday of each month at 10 a.m. at the chamber office.

– Be Informed.  Interested in creating a culture of wellness within your company, but not sure where to begin?  Sign up to receive our Healthy Tips & Tricks emails.  You’ll also receive updates for upcoming events, the Healthy Business Challenge, and the latest committee news and happenings.  You can also find us on Facebook and LinkedIn!

– Join the Challenge!  The Chamber’s Healthy Business Challenge is for everyone!  No matter your company size, you can be recognized for your wellness efforts!  The award will garner you company exposure on the chamber’s Web site, in eNewsletters, and in local newspapers.  Not to mention, the placard and physical award are great for PR and employee recruitment!  The 2016 Healthy Business Challenge will begin on January 14th — Learn more at the upcoming January Breakfast & Healthy Business Kick-Off!

Stay connected to the Loudoun Chamber through our eNewsletter, containing local news, upcoming events and ways to get involved in our community.

Join our Email List