Healthy Goal Setting

Last summer I asked our eldest son Max, two weeks before he turned 7 years old, “what would you still like to accomplish as a 6 year old?” He put some thought into it, and responded…”I’d like to learn to ride a bike.” We were very excited for him with this goal, as we’d been encouraging him to learn to ride for many months, and had stopped and left it up to him because he hadn’t seem interested.

That day, he asked us to take the training wheels off his bike. The next day, he asked us to help him ride around the park. Every day, for three days he asked us to help him ride. On the first day, he could ride to the corner on his own. On the second day, he could ride half way around the park. And on the third day, he rode around the block, with me trailing behind, running to try to keep up with him.

This is a good example of goal setting. Max chose a clear goal. He set a time line. He had us hold him accountable. He used discipline and determination. And he set a reward for himself – the ability to ride a bike!

Goal setting and follow through can be very difficult sometimes. Especially when we don’t feel motivated, or we feel like every time we attempt it, it turns into failure. And then earlier failures can have the effect of us feeling stress when we set goals. However, goals are very important in our lives, and just as we saw with Max, there is great empowerment that comes from setting and achieving goals.

Healthy goal setting requires a number of steps, including the following:

  1. Choosing clear goals
  2. Setting a timeline
  3. Choose an accountability partner
  4. Set a reward or leverage
  5. Follow through

Join us for our upcoming Living Wellness Workshop: ‘Healthy Goal Setting’ on Wed January 25th, 2012 as we walk through these steps in detail. And to help set goals for this year and hold each other accountable to follow through, in a small group setting.