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  • Writer's pictureElisabetta Fernandez

The Ultimate Guide to Setting and Achieving Your Health Goals in 2024



Listening to Your Body


As we usher in 2024, many of us look at the fresh calendar as a canvas for personal growth and wellness. Setting health goals is a tradition as old as time, but achieving them is where the real challenge lies. This guide is designed to help you navigate the journey of setting realistic health goals and arm you with strategies to stay motivated and successful throughout the year. Whether you aim to improve your physical fitness, mental well-being, or overall lifestyle, the key is to approach your goals with a practical and adaptable plan.


The path to wellness is not one-size-fits-all. According to a study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychology, while about 60% of us make New Year's resolutions, only about 8% achieve them. This statistic isn't meant to discourage you but to highlight the importance of setting achievable, well-planned goals. Let's dive into how you can be part of that successful 8% by breaking down the process into manageable steps.


So, if you’re looking for ideas to help you successfully set health goals in 2024, look no further. Here are the top tips you need to create realistic goals that will stick with you for the whole year. 


1. Identifying Your Goals:

Start by defining clear, specific goals. Instead of a vague aim like "get healthy," opt for concrete objectives like "run a 5K" or "meditate for 10 minutes daily." The SMART criteria (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound) is a proven framework for goal setting, as recommended by experts in a Harvard Business Review article.


2. Creating a Roadmap:

Break down your goals into smaller, actionable steps. For instance, if your goal is to run a 5K, start with shorter runs and gradually increase your distance. The Mayo Clinic suggests starting with small changes to build up to larger health goals.


3. Staying Motivated:

Keeping the fire of motivation burning can be challenging. The American Psychological Association recommends setting realistic goals and changing one behavior at a time to maintain motivation.


4. Tracking Progress:

Monitoring your progress is crucial. Use apps or a journal to track your achievements. A study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine found that those who kept a food diary lost twice as much weight as those who didn’t.


5. Adjusting Goals as Needed:

Flexibility is key. Life changes, and so might your goals. The World Health Organization emphasizes the importance of adapting health goals to changing lifestyles and abilities.


6. Overcoming Setbacks:

Setbacks are a normal part of any journey. The key is not to get discouraged. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises focusing on progress made rather than temporary setbacks.


You Are Not Alone


Remember, the journey to achieving your health goals is a marathon, not a sprint. It's about making incremental changes that add up to significant transformations. Be patient with yourself and recognize that every small step forward is a victory in its own right. Your health and well-being are a lifelong journey, and the steps you take today are building blocks for a healthier tomorrow.


And if you’re tired of the start and stop of New Year’s resolutions that come and go each year, maybe it’s time to invest in additional accountability & support that will help you stay with your goal for the long haul. Working with a health and wellness coach is a great way to have a sounding board - someone who will help you strategize to make a big dream a reality with small, achievable steps, and then hold you accountable to sticking to those goals.


My Invitation


I invite you to schedule a complimentary 30-minute consultation with me today. Let me help you clarify your goals and devise a personalized plan to achieve them. Your journey to wellness is unique, and I’m here to support you every step of the way. Click the Booking tab to book your session and start your journey to a healthier, happier you. If you have any questions, please email me at elisabetta.p.fernandez@gmail.com.



Sources:

Journal of Clinical Psychology - Wiley Online Library. (n.d.). https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/jclp.1151 


Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. (2023, December 5). 5 steps to start a fitness program. Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/in-depth/fitness/art-20048269 


American Psychological Association. (n.d.). The secret behind making your new year’s resolutions last. American Psychological Association. https://www.apa.org/topics/behavioral-health/new-year-resolutions 


World Health Organization. (n.d.). Physical activity. World Health Organization. https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/physical-activity 


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2023, June 15). Losing weight. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/healthyweight/losing_weight/index.html




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