Are your New Year's Goals SMART?

As 2015 is coming to a close, people reflect on the year they have had and look to improve in 2016. Many people will set goals for the New Year, but not everyone will achieve their goals. The goal is general in nature, open-ended and as time passes so does the motivation. Why?

The goal that was set is not SMART! A SMART goal is specific, measurable, accountable, realistic, has a timetable. Here is how to set your goals for success in 2016:

SPECIFIC: If the goal is to lose weight and become a healthier you in 2016 that is awesome! Setting a goal as "lose weight" is not enough, it is not specific. A goal of "losing 15 lbs" is a much more SMART goal. It is very specific about what you are trying to accomplish. It has a start and finish weight.

MEASURABLE: By setting the goal at "lose 15 lbs" it can specifically measure the progress. You know the progress after 1 week, 2 weeks, 1 month and 6 months. If you are on track to reach your goal, great! If not, what changes can you make to help you reach it?

ACCOUNTABLE: Accountability is one of the hardest aspects of goal setting. To help you reach your goal we recommend telling a loved one, family member and friends about your goal. Posting your goal on the refrigerator as well making it visible to the household. This allows the people in your inner circle to check on your progress, motivate you and keep you working hard when you don't feel like it.

REALISTIC: Setting a realistic goal may be the most important aspect of a SMART goal. How many times have you set a goal that just sounded out of this world great, but come to realize you will never make it. Not for lack of trying, but it was never realistic from the start. Your goal should be challenging but certainly realistic. A non-realistic goal can shut down your motivation before your eyes.

TIMETABLE: The last aspect of a SMART goal is setting a timetable. A goal without a timetable has no finish line. If your goal is to "lose 15 lbs", when do you want to lose that by? March 1? May? etc. By setting a timetable you have a finish date that drives you to deliver.

Accomplishing your goals is not an easy task, but by setting SMART goals it allows you to set yourself up for success. Our original goal of "lose weight in 2016" has now become "lose 15lbs by March 1st of 2016". This goal is specific, measurable, accountable, realistic, and has a timetable.

If an unwanted health concern such as back pain, neck pain, sciatica, knee pain or any other pain is stopping you from reaching your goals in 2016, please schedule an appointment at any of our 7 location around Chicagoland.