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February 4, 2020

Setting Realistic Health Goals

It’s a new year and a new decade. The urge to set “New Year’s resolutions” is upon us. Heading into February our enthusiasm for those lofty goals could be waning. It’s ok. This happens a lot.

Shifting our mindset about our health goals can transform the struggle into a success.

It is important to have realistic health goals for several reasons:

  1. It keeps our health at the top of our mind

  2. Getting healthier and staying healthier makes for a happier, longer life.

  3. It sets a good example for our loved ones.

  4. We will save money by avoiding expensive doctors bills, treatments, and medications

We hope the following steps will help you stay positive and set realistic health goals that are very attainable. Remember to be kind to yourself on this journey. Mental health is just as important as physical health. Support and encourage yourself just like you would a loved one. Focus on what you are are doing right and not on what you are doing wrong.

#1. Focus on one thing at a time

Creating good health and developing a healthy lifestyle takes time. It doesn’t make sense to tackle everything at once. For good health we need movement, a nutritious diet, good sleep, and emotional health. Don’t destroy your mental health by overwhelming yourself.

Start with one area. It could be physical movement. Choose an activity you enjoy and start doing it regularly. Once you have been doing that for a few weeks and it has become a habit focus on another area. Start getting one more hour of sleep. Or add more fruits and vegetables to your diet. Build upon each new habit rather than trying to do all the things. That would be like trying to drink from a fire house. Which seems unhealthy and possibly painful.

#2. Make Specific Goals

Being as specific as you can about your goals will help you clarify them and also help you realize when you achieve them.

“I am going to walk the dog more.” verus “ I am going to walk the dog 3 times a week for a month.”

The second goal is much more defined and gives you something to shoot for. Just saying “more” could mean one more time than you did last year. Not super helpful.

#3. Be realistic about what you can accomplish

This is tied to focusing on one thing at a time. Set the bar low at first. It if is more realistic to say, “I am going to walk the dog once a week” than set that goal and build from there.

If you decide to focus on eating healthier start small. Don’t throw away everything in your kitchen, spend hours looking up recipes on Pinterest, go crazy for a whole Sunday making “mason jar salads” for the week and then decide the next week that was way too much work and zip through a drive-though instead.

Baby steps.

#4. Focus on the long game

Anything that is going to last isn’t going to happen overnight. Five, ten, or twenty years from now you will be able to look back at your current self and say “Thank you for making our health a priority.”

Keep that in mind if you get sidetracked or frustrated. Your long game is quite literally, a LONG healthy life.

#5. Talk to Professionals

Enlist the help of health professionals. Start by scheduling your annual physical if you are due for one. Once you have done that pick another one like the eye doctor or dentist. Do not ignore things like mammograms, prostate exams, and other things related to your gender or medical history.

Visit a new type of practitioner like a chiropractor, acupuncturist, massage therapist etc. that you have been curious about.

Address any nagging or ongoing issues, even it is a minor pain like a sore shoulder or a twingy knee. It might have become “normal” for you, but it doesn’t have to be an quite possibly is an easy fix.

#6. Find an accountability partner

Don’t embark on this quest for a healthier lifestyle alone. Find at least one person you know and trust to share your goals with. Ask him or her to hold you accountable, support your goals, and to check in on your progress. You can do the same for them.

How can we help?

We want to help you on your health journey. Make a chiropractic appointment with us and get tuned up for 2020. We’d love to discuss your goals and help you devise a plan to reach them. We also have many resources and contacts in the Lansing area who can become a part of your health team.

Make an appointment today and check a box on your goal list! See, you are already accomplishing things. Doesn’t that feel good?

(517) 781-4884

To find more about Dr. Ryan and Dr. Allyson more and their chiropractic practice and philosophy, click here.