How to be a GOALkeeper in 2015
Post By: Beth Collier, PT, DPT, OCS
The fast approaching end of December marks a time of celebration with family and friends as another year comes to a close. It is easy to look forward to a New Year in celebration and excitement as a new beginning with the best intentions to make change. Often we find ourselves setting similar goals to those made in years past, which tend to fall by the wayside as lives become hectic and priorities shift to unexpected distractions. Rather than continuing to break cycles of goal setting for another upcoming year, consider the following for success in your endeavors.
American philosopher, psychologist and educational reformer John Dewey said, “we do not learn from experience….we learn from reflecting on experience.” In order to combat frequently abandoned goals, thoughtful reflection is necessary to learn from our past. It is easy to set goals like “getting healthy” or “losing 10 pounds” but consider what barriers have existed in the past to require you to continue setting such a goal. Do you have measureable outcomes for your goal, including timeline and a specific measure of progress? What is your motivation for the goal and have you lost your motivation for such a goal in the past? If you have lost motivation before or found a higher priority, perhaps one needs to consider their true desire to attain such a goal at the current time or should one place more value on their motivation and outcomes? Are you anticipating barriers and have you consider a strategy to overcome barriers that you may be able to predict? Our reflection on past actions and outcomes can help guide your goal setting and set yourself up for success to achieve your goals in the future.
Classical Greeks taught that in order to be fully healthy and happy one must meet the needs of the body, the mind and the spirit. To neglect one of these was to invite some sort of ill health or emotional distress. In establishing goals for the New Year, consider each of these aspects for your life and the value you place with each. Ultimately, as is the proverbial three-legged stool, a balance lies within each aspect working together. In an effort to assist goals for each, consider the following under each category:
BODY: sleep, deep breathing, exercise, nutrition, habits/addictions
MIND: career, relationships, intellectual stimulation/thoughtful reflection
SPIRIT: emotions, faith/hope, support system
The Irish employed this strategy with their traditional New Year’s toast:
May the New Year grant you
The eye of a blacksmith on a nail
The good humor of a girl at a dance
The strong hand of a priest on his parish.
Happy 2015 to you all!