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Do's and Don'ts of Goal Setting

Key Pieces to the Puzzle


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  • The article was inspiring and informative. I had a car accident and need to gain my pre-accident status. I was trying to rush myself and was not able to keep up. I will be reading this article again and again.
  • DO chose a goal that you have total control of; DON'T choose a goal that will be impacted by many factors outside of your control.

    So, DON'T choose "lose x number of pounds by y date", since how much weight is lost will be impacted by your genetics, your hormonal cycles, the weather, stress levels, just how much of your food is actually digested, and a host of other things that you have no way of controlling. You can do absolutely everything "to the numbers" and have the weight loss be nowhere near the prediction due to things you can't do anything about, which would mean that YOU "failed" to meet your goal - right?! WRONG. It mean that the GOAL failed, not that YOU did. Seriously - DON'T GO THERE!

    Choose goals that you CAN control - minutes per week of exercise, average calorie intake, average vegetable intake, progress in cardio or strength training, or even how many rooms you will clean each week - so that your level of success in reaching that goal is entirely yours to celebrate and be proud of.

  • Frabbit- I use a simple notebook and keep it right in front of my computer. Every morning I make a cup of coffee and sit down with SparkPeople. After I fill in everything for the day, I write in my notebook about how I feel and how I am doing.
  • One of my issues is to where to write this all down and keep it organized. Any suggestions?
  • I've tried everything over the years, but nothing seemed to stop my late night food binges. For health reasons, I've had to cut out most of my added sugar. Suddenly, without much effort on my part, most of my late night cravings vanished on their own. I still have the occasional emotional meltdown, like yesterday, when I can't stop myself from eating everything in sight, but on the whole, the one step of eliminating sugar from my diet has turned my diet and my health, completely around.
  • FREEDOM151
    Great article, very true and helpful. I would add I have to find a "how" that will reach my goal. Also, the "how" must be enjoyable and workable for me to stick with it. I believe this is why "it takes people 6 tries to succeed" and is often part of the "monkey wrench" scenario. Finding the right "how" for you.
  • the weight i lost i gained back i was trying real hard to succeed i failed but reading this article made me realize that its ok to step back because now i can go forward again even stronger
  • I've set several goals since February and I've met all of them. I bought myself a charm bracelet and I add a charm each time I lose 10 lbs. I've been in a plateau for a while but I know I'll start losing again eventually. My doctor recently tinkered with my thyroid meds and I think that might be the problem. Otherwise, I'm enjoying this process. I'm much more active and healthier.
    You have to be willing to let go of your negativity. If everything someone suggests is met by "no, that won't work", it won't!
  • I'm in.....Goal to track food every day for 2 weeks! One step at a time.
  • Sensible, encouraging articles like this are why I love Spark so much more than the "kill yourself to lose weight fast" trends. Thank you!
  • I can do a better job of setting specific goals. I am still somewhat hung up on the specificity element. IN my mind, I eat a lot of vegetables and some fruit, but I often just eat whatever leftovers there are and forget to or fail to add something fresh. I have been on a crusade to eat the things I buy before I have to throw them out. I wish there were a way to buy a 1/4 loaf of bread, by the way.
  • I need to start again and focus on just one thing at a time.

    what should it be? eliminating things I know are not good for me to eat? Just one food item a month? 3 a month? or for 6 months?

    or should I focus on adding 10 minutes of fitness into every day?

    Suggestions anyone?
  • I have a goal set to walk my dog Benny a minimum of 4 times for a period of minimum 15 minutes each.
  • I'm not good at the rewards thing either - meeting my goals is pretty satisfying. But I need to do a better job and scheduling in the time to meet my goals, and SparkPeople is helping me start to enlist support. I have a couple teams here that really really help.
  • Good points, thanks.

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