Integration Crossfit

A New Take on Smart Goals?

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by Tanner Nuebauer, Co-Owner of Integration Crossfit

This resolution season, I’m encouraging us all to challenge how we set and execute our wellness goals for 2020. It’s likely that you’ve heard of the acronym SMART goals, which encourages us to set Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Constrained goals for ourselves, in hopes for us to avoid the age-old classic, “This year, I’m going to exercise more”. Is being more specific than that really the best approach?

Since over 25% of Americans abandon their resolutions within the first two weeks of setting them, I think it may be wise to offer ourselves more leniency. I know that I shut down when I decide that I’ve failed at something, so my approach this year is to set a resolution that can’t fail. As I strive to give myself more grace each day, here are three ways that you can set healthy goals that still allow you to be your perfectly imperfect self.

              • Avoid setting goals that require you to do something EVERY DAY.

Life happens. Sometimes we don’t wake up feeling as motivated and refreshed as we did on day one. Consider the small circumstances that may prevent you from accomplishing something every day. It could be that your car didn’t start, you were running late, or, perhaps, the weather that prevented you from accomplishing your task. Let your goals allow for these small errors.

Try This: Instead of setting a goal to be achieved every day, try setting a goal to be achieved each month: (I’m going to exercise eight times in February).
              • Adapt!

One stat that isn’t discussed often is the amount of people who tweak their goals after they supposedly “give up” on them within the first two weeks. When I fail at a goal, my negative tendency is to shut down and pretend like it wasn’t good for me in the first place. The reality is, if our goal is to maintain our workouts and actually accomplish something that creates positive change, we may need to expand or retract on some of our expectations. THIS IS NOT FAILURE. If I set my goal to exercise eight times in February and I only accomplished six, am I worse off if I make my new goal to exercise fourteen times in February and March?

Try this: Give yourself unlimited do-overs. It may seem silly, but think about how many do-overs you give yourself before you quit altogether?
              • Fall back in love with the subjective

In our pursuit for a resolution that is set up to be impossible to fail, we need to remember to let go of “the numbers” sometimes. It’s too often that we try to hold ourselves to a numeric goal and we fail to see the bigger picture. In my opinion, we are more tied to subjective feelings like more energy, better sleep, and better mood, than we are to fitting in a Size Four.

Try This: Make your goal tied to a subjective outcome by an objective process. (In 2020, I’m going to have more energy by exercising an average of 3 days per week)

Overall, it may seem like I’m encouraging a non-committed approach. In fact, that may unintentionally be the case. However, when it comes to sticking to something like exercising regularly, I think we need to let go of the negativity that keeps us from persisting (or even starting for that matter).

Find a community that lifts you up and encourages you like the members at Integration Fitness do for me on a daily basis, and you’ll be guaranteed to succeed!

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