Making changes to your health and wellbeing can be challenging. Old habits must be broken, new ones need to be formed, and it all seems quite daunting to begin with. How do you initiate such changes when there is so much to consider? Many people decide that they need to work on their wellbeing after a personal health scare; perhaps you want to lose weight, improve your gut health, or are considering options for fertility. Whatever your ultimate goal is, having a plan and a solid support network is vital for success.
Prepare your mindset, plan your goals
Start by creating the right mindset to mentally prepare yourself for success. Doing this requires a little bit of careful self-analysis, utilising positive self talk (i.e I can do this!), and being patient and kind to yourself even when things don’t go your way. Write your goals down, what is it that you want to achieve? Do you have a time frame in mind? Are there any tools/knowledge you require? Do you have family/friends who would be willing to support you in your efforts?
Visualisation can be very useful. Imagine yourself achieving your goals, how you’ll feel when you get there, what you’ll be able to do, how your life will change for the better. Do this every day. Savour the sensations, sights, smells, feelings….everything that tells you that you’ve made it. Imagine this ‘future you’ as often as possible.
Why you need to know where your blocks are
Have you tried something before but it hasn’t worked even though it should have? Blocks to success are often well hidden and can take many forms. They may be mental or physical (i.e metabolic). This is where a wellness coach or other qualified wellness professional can help. They can help you work out where these blocks lie and provide assistance on how to break through them. Metabolic blocks can be difficult to establish, and an underlying condition is often to blame. Examples include blood sugar dysregulation, leptin resistance, gut or hormonal imbalances, food allergies or intolerances. .
Why goals setting is so important.
Knowing what you want to achieve is all well and good, but taking action in a purposeful way requires a plan. I always recommend that my clients write down their goals and keep them somewhere close. A journal or diary is ideal. Along with your goals, prepare some steps for how you intend to achieve them. For example:
You want to improve your energy levels. You know that you’re not getting the recommended 8 hours sleep each night because you’ve got into the habit of going to bed at midnight and getting up for work at 6am.
- Begin preparing yourself for bed 15 minutes earlier twice each week over the next month.
- Improve your sleep hygiene by turning off the TV an hour before bed and read a book, or take a bath and enjoy a cup of relaxing herbal tea.
- Write in your daily journal to empty your mind before going off to sleep. Include something that you’re grateful for or something that made you feel happy and content.
Before you know it, you’ll be getting that much-needed rest, waking refreshed and feeling ready to tackle the day!
Goal setting helps to make you mindful of what, how and why you want to make a change. Writing your goals down and keeping track of your progress also helps to keep you motivated and shows you just how far you’ve come!
Practice and persistence
Before I started implementing goal setting into my practice and treatment plans, I had no idea of how powerful it could be! I initially began using it for myself, and was amazed at how much more successful I became at improving my own health and wellness. Even at 35 weeks pregnant with an energetic 8 year old AND running my own business, I’m religiously taking 30 minutes out of each day for myself, and doing at least a half hour each day of gentle exercise. For my clients, having a proper plan and set of goals has helped them to make the most amazing changes in a far shorter space of time. It’s also helped to reinforce the importance of accountability, creating and sustaining healthy habits in ways I didn’t think possible.
In addition to planning and goal setting, it’s also important to give yourself time to practice these skills and be persistent in your efforts! Again, this is where keeping a wellness journal is really important, because it will show you when you make even the slightest progress and help to keep your motivation up.
Get your team onside!
Speak to your support network; this may include health practitioners, family members or friends. If you feel comfortable, tell them what you want to do and why. They can be an invaluable resource providing emotional support, motivation, and in the case of health care providers, tools and knowledge. For family members who live with you, these changes may impact them as well, so keeping them in the loop is a good idea; you never know, they may decide to join you!
To help you begin to create your own set of health and wellness goals, I’ve created an easy to follow, 6 step process that you can download and use for free.
Need help reaching your goals? If you’d like more information, please feel free to contact us.