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  • Sarah Hooff CHN, CSNC

Six Weeks of Wellness, CBT Week One: Goal Setting

The Seven Deadly Sins of Goal Setting

Ok, so here goes. My first post as a cognitive behavioral therapist. I just finished my training last week and I'm in love all the gems I've picked up so far! It's such a positive, action based study and as a nutritionist it fits so very well!

My teacher however, arranged the goal setting strategies towards the end of the course, but with everything that's currently happening around the world, I thought I'd go with my gut and  jump right in. I've been listening to all the jokes about the COVID 19 weight gain, referring to the 19 lbs people are expected to gain and how people everywhere are using alcohol to cope. Just yesterday I heard alcohol sales have soared so high that the World Health Organization issued an announcement reminding people of it's negative side effects, especially regarding immunity. I mean if you think it's serving you then by all means indulge (and get back on the health wagon as soon as you can) but in my humble opinion it is a bit scary. Alcoholism is no joke, and definitely will stall ones life plans if you have some, and it's also a depressant.  As far as weight gain goes, 20 lbs is also a lot and will lead to sluggishness and sometimes depression, its also hard work to loose so do be careful. Eat well and stay active. Those are amazing stress busters I tell ya! They will also serve your highest self.

So what can we do to center ourselves again? Goal Setting! Amazing subject! Hopefully folks are done with the Netflix binging and eating themselves sleepy soon, its spring, its go time! Home workouts, batch cooking, planting a killer garden, there are so many ways and opportunities right now to knock it out of the park 2020 after all!

So if you need a little help avoiding the traps check out the Seven Deadly Sins of Goal Setting to follow. Might just help you cut through the noise right now and put some fire under ya : ) Yes, we got this!

Seven Deadly Sins of Goal Setting

1. Not writing your goal down.

You've probably heard by now this is an incredibly powerful tool! Some stats reveal one is around 70% more likely to succeed when they regularly write their goals down. While this might seem like a modern technique people have observed this practice for many generations. In Africa for example, people write their goals down and bury them deep in the earth. I think the more time we spend focusing on what we do want in life the better!

2. Not having a clear vision or values.

What is it about this goal that serves your best self, your highest potential? This is perhaps the most powerful mindset for achieving a goal. If one is shaky here it can often lead to no.6, loosing our focus. When one is crystal clear on the greater goal, our life vision we can become a powerful force! Think big my friends! By thinking big I also would like to encourage people to ask themselves if this is a vision that also helps others? Now that's is truly powerful energy!

3. Not setting realistic goals? 

Are you giving yourself enough time, resources, support etc to reach your goal? This point is also very important. Many people don't give themselves enough time to achieve their goal. It may be helpful to simplify here. There are many tools one can use to help simplify. A want vs need worksheet may help clarify a goal or breaking up your goals into sections such as family, health, career, finances etc. We all have a lot on our plates these days so again, as always, clarity can be of tremendous help. Don't overwhelm yourself with too many tight restraints. A little pressure is always good but one also should avoid timelines that set ourselves up for failure. Although failure can be just a perspective too (progress not perfection), but I hope you get my meaning.

4. Not having a firm plan in place.

This is similar to No. 3 but for this one is may be useful to break your goal into stages. Once your goal has been clarified, breaking it up into short term goals and medium term goals (which will ultimately lead to your Life Vision) can be of great help. Tip: There will always be more short term goals then medium. Its all those little actions steps today that will get you where you want to be. It's always about appreciating the present!

5. Not taking action.

People that get stuck on this point are often people who struggle with confidence for whatever reason. Perhaps insufficient support or a challenging environment. Next week I'll also be talking about cognitive distortions. You want to miss this one! For those of you unfamiliar with what cognitive distortions are, it's a CBT term for those little ugly thoughts (and thought patterns) we have that we don't need to give life to. Anything that that tells you you aren't good enough needs to be dealt with. One can trace back the thought, question its truth and if it doesn't serve your greatest potential let it go. Action will lead you to where you want to be so please don't listen to the lies inside your head. I'm not sure about you, but I don't see buckets of 'perfect people' walking around! You got this!

6. Loosing Focus.

So as I said in No. 2, not having a clear vision for your future might lead to this one. Seriously, have you really thought about what is it you do want 20, 30, 40 years from now? If you feel like you've been spinning your wheels awhile now perhaps its time to sit down with a pen and some paper and start dreaming and crafting a vision of what you truly want. Perhaps being part of a positive community, having a bustling, happy family, financial freedom, space to create?  When we tap into this part of our being in can be tremendously helpful!

7. No follow through.

Ok this this one is the make it our break it part of goal setting. It's not quite the same as not taking action, this part refers to the many, many action steps it takes to achieve a goal. Yes there are always going to be set backs, but do you keep going? Do you waste time getting back on the horse? No time like the present right!? Like I said in No. 4 there will always be way more short term goals to check off that list.  Following through and working your way through that list is all about growing in maturity and being persistent.

Hope you found this little list helpful, I know I sure did! 

All the best and stay tuned right here for tomorrow. Tomorrow we are jumping into fitness!

Take good care,

Sarah xo

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