New Year’s Resolutions

Why do we do this to ourselves every year? Why do we set ourselves up for failure with New Year’s Resolutions? We’re all about figuring out how to achieve our goals in 2024 (hint: getting expert care from the Osteopaths at BeacHealth might help if any of your goals are health-related). If you are still floundering around eating the last of the holiday treats and need some help, join us and let’s dive in and think about how to make your resolutions reality.

Introducing SMART Goals:
You might have come across the acronym SMART before. The letters can stand for a few different things, but we’re going to identify them as Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-Bound today. (Of course, your goals should also be significant, meaningful, adjustable….) Long story short: It’s smart to turn your resolutions into SMART goals because it transforms vague aspirations into tangible targets. Let’s break it down.
Take a common resolution as an example such as wanting to be healthier in 2024. (That’s an excellent aspiration and we applaud you for it!)

Specific: What does healthier mean for you? You might have a vague notion of being slim, moving with the grace of a twenty-year-old athlete and (bonus) fitting into the jeans you wore when you were at university… But we want you to imagine what healthy looks and feels like for you RIGHT NOW. Perhaps you have a weight range goal in mind, or maybe you want mobility back in a specific part of your body. Your journey to better health might involve multiple interlinked but individual goals. Once you know what healthy means to you and what specific goals will get you there, write them down and commit to them.

Measurable: We’ve talked about what “healthy” might look and feel like to help you identify the goals, but now that you’ve identified your goals, how will you track your progress? Will you rely on numbers on the scale or measuring tape to measure your weight loss? Could you keep a diary where you note your pain rating daily on a scale of one to ten, or measure your heart rate before, during and after exercise? Is health a number? NO. Can measuring your progress keep you accountable to yourself? Yes.

Achievable: So, fitting into the jeans you wore at university might not be achievable (at least in the short term). But steady, sustainable weight loss is. Running a marathon in the first quarter of the year might not work if your exercise regime has mainly involved coach surfing and diddly squats in recent years, but a Park Run personal best might be doable.

Relevant: We’re sorry to keep banging on about the jeans, but they’re such a good example of what not to worry about. The jeans are just a status symbol – they may not even be in fashion anymore! It’s a lovely dream to keep you inspired on the tough days, but your goal needs to be relevant to your life right now. For example, I want to achieve a weight within a healthy weight range in 2024 so that I don’t need to worry about my blood pressure, my cholesterol, or my knee having to bear unnecessary weight on the stairs… That’s a relevant goal. (By the way, our Osteopaths are here to help you with your knee in the meantime.)

Time-Bound: A goal you plan on getting around to at some point in time is not a goal you’ll get around to. If you want to improve your range of motion in a stiff joint, commit to calling us for an appointment by the end of the week and to performing the exercises we set for you daily. Break the goal down into its required steps and put those in your diary. (Pro-tip: Tell us about your goals during your appointment, and we can help you figure out realistic time frames for their achievement.)

So, there you have it – a crash course in setting SMART goals for the new year. Whatever you want to achieve, we’ll be cheering for you. And we’re here to help — whether your goals are health-related or if pain is just getting in the way.

PS: Did you know that we’re also on Facebook (Beacheath) and Instagram (beachintegrated)? Follow us for more health and exercise inspirations and fun facts.