‘New Year, New You’ - we hear that phrase everywhere this time of year, but does it really mean? For many of us, it’s easy to get inspired by the energy of the season to be a better version of ourselves, but that energy often isn’t enough to carry us through to keeping our New Year’s resolutions or goals.
So, how can we keep our promise and make this year different? Your Sunny Trainer team has come together to provide their top tips and direction to help you set realistic goals for 2022 and have all the tools to achieve them!
New Year New You 2022, Week Six: Goal Setting
Welcome to week 6 of our 2022 New Year New You Program. We’re kicking off 2022 with 6 weeks focused on healthier living.
After 5 weeks of focused effort towards living a healthier lifestyle in all different areas of life from fitness to hydration, healthy eating to mental health, finding more balance in your routine and beyond, we hope you feel ready to make a change.
That’s why this week is all about - drumroll please…goal setting!
Together, let’s focus on the basics of setting good goals, and learn some strategies you can use to focus on setting some realistic and attainable goals for 2022.
Why Is Goal Setting Important?
For the majority of us, we have the desire to push forward in life. But when we don’t take the time to plan it out, we can feel overwhelmed in the number of areas we want to change and get stuck. Goal setting is important because it keeps you focused as you pursue personal growth. I love how Sunny Trainer James puts it:
“Goal setting is valuable because without it we just drift in life. As humans, we have this innate hunger for setting goals, accomplishing things, and moving up and progressing in life. So, when you have a goal, it gives you direction not only within your physical activity program, your nutrition program, but also work, your relationships, social life, your spiritual life.” - JAMES KING
I think it’s great how he touches on how encompassing goal setting can be. Goal setting is not just for fitness, you can use it to improve all areas of your life.
How to Set Better Goals?
Have you ever heard of SMART goals? SMART is an acronym that includes the elements of how you can make your goals more practical, which will help you to focus your thoughts, and chase after something that’s possible. Below, I’ve broken down SMARTER goals. The ‘E’ and the ‘R’ are special additions to SMART goals that Sunny Trainer James shared, to help make your goals even better.
Your goals should be specific. That means setting numbers and deadlines. For example, ‘I want to lose 10 pounds’ rather than ‘I want to lose weight’.
Your goals need to be measurable. Find a metric to use. If your goal is weight loss, you might choose to weigh yourself or use a measuring tape to record measurements throughout the weeks.
Your goals should be achievable. That means your goals might be challenging but they’re possible, you’re not solving world hunger in one night.
Your goal has to make sense for you. Just because your friend has a goal to compete in a CrossFit competition, doesn’t mean that should be your goal. It should be something you want to work towards.
Give yourself a time goal, like ‘I want to lose 10 pounds in 6 months'. With time on the table, it will help keep you accountable in working towards your goal. If you have all the time in the world, then tomorrow is just as good of a day to start as today.
Evaluating was one of the steps to a SMARTER goal that Sunny Trainer James shared with us. Here’s what he had to say about it:
“Day to day life can get in the way of our goals so having a set evaluation time will help keep goals on top of mind, and help with intentionality. ” - JAMES KING
Also, evaluating your goal frequently is a great way to check-in with yourself and make sure your strategies are working. If you need to adjust your methods this is a great time to do so.
James also thought reward deserved to be added onto the classic SMART goals acronym, and I couldn’t agree more. He says:
“As humans, we seek immediate gratification. Unfortunately, for many habits, the reward is often distant. This makes incorporating these habits a challenge. In order to overcome this, we can set rewards for our new healthy behaviors.” - JAMES KING
So, treat yourself! Whether you take yourself out for a smoothie, cook yourself a healthy dinner, or buy yourself a new workout outfit the options are endless. I’d recommend something that supports your goal. If you’re excited about your goal, it will only add to the excitement and support you along the way.
How to Set Better Goals?
1. Start Small
When starting any journey, it’s great to dream big. However, it’s important to remember that most big goals don’t happen overnight. For every big goal, there are many small steps to get there. Sunny Trainer Alexa agrees,
“To best achieve goals, I like to set one big goal and then set small goals, so I’m able to really break down my big goal and do one small thing at a time. That feels a little more manageable for me.” - ALEXA LAMBARRI
Like Alexa says, breaking up your goals into small manageable pieces can help sustain you on your journey, and make the act of getting to your big goal more practical.
2. Write It Down
Most popular tip from Sunny trainers? Ding, ding, ding: writing it down. I heard write it down from each trainer I interviewed and for a reason. Sunny Trainer James puts it perfectly,
“The most important tip I have for maximizing your success when it comes to goal setting is writing it down. We have so many distractions in day-to-day life and we can set a goal Monday and forget about it Wednesday. So, write your goals down, keep it something visible that you can see everywhere and that will serve as a reminder to do things that align with your goals.” - JAMES KING
3. Share It With Someone
Sunny Trainer Alexa finds help achieving her goals through the power of accountability:
“I like to talk through my goals with someone. So, I love to call my mom or my husband and go ‘Okay so this is the big goal, and here’s how I’m going to get there’. Sometimes they’re able to bring light to something that maybe I hadn’t thought of before so that way I’m able to manage my small goals a bit better and accomplish my big goal a little bit faster.” - ALEXA LAMBARRI
Finding an accountability partner can be incredibly powerful, not only can they keep you in check when you might be running a little too unrealistic with your goals, but they can also help to cheer you on along the way.
4. Stay Positive
When setting goals, your mindset is everything. When you approach goals from the negative mindset of ‘I have to do this’, it can start to feel more like a chore. However, when you approach your goals from the positive mindset of ‘I get to do this’, each action becomes a positive step towards improving your life.
5. Don't Make Perfection The Goal
No goal should require perfection. You should always make room for life balance when it comes to any goal or lifestyle you choose to live. Simply because perfection isn’t sustainable, but it’s also not required to meet your goals.
6. Live It
Finally, planning and talking are great; but goals can’t happen without action. Dana outlines how to make your goals a reality:
“I think big and I dream big. And I do believe in manifesting, putting things out into the universe that you want, but you really need to live those things. Now, I can’t just say ‘I want to go drive a Porsche tomorrow’. What are the daily steps that are going to get me to that specific goal?” - DANA SIMONELLI
At some point, dreaming is just dreaming - it’s time to live your dreams!
Goal Setting Inspiration Ideas for 2022
When I sat down with our trainers, they were kind enough to share some of their goals for 2022. I’ve shared a few of them below to help get you inspired.
Sunny Trainer James Shared His Goal to Compete in Another Bodybuilding Competition:
“In November of this year, I will be competing in my fourth natural bodybuilding show, with the goal of improving for my last competition. I can’t control if I win or not, but I can control if I’m better than I was previously.” - JAMES KING
James’ goal is extremely relevant to him as bodybuilding is something he’s trained for in the past and is eager to do again. That relevancy will keep him working towards his goals, while his time frame will keep him accountable along the way to his big competition.
Sunny Trainer Sam on the Other Hand Plans to Master the Kettlebell, an Amazing Training Tool to Challenge Your Full Body Strength:
“My goal for 2022 is to study and master the more complex kettlebell movements. I’ve hired a trainer to help me do this each week, and I’ll be practicing on my own as well.” - SAM CANDLER
What I love about Sam is how she’s constantly working towards ways to better herself, but unlike many of us, she focuses on one skill at a time until it becomes a habit and then shifts to the next.
I hope she won’t mind me mentioning it, but I can attest to watching Sam work towards her goal of running 1000 miles in 2021. It was empowering and exciting to check-in where she was every few weeks and watch her gain excitement each time, she ticked off miles towards her big goal.
Now six weeks into 2022, I’ve watched her approach her kettlebell goal for this year. She’s already made incredible gains, but beyond that I find it inspiring that she keeps up with her running as well. Running wasn’t just a 2021 goal, but a lifestyle change that has impacted her life for the long term. And no doubt her kettlebell training is something she will carry with her beyond 2022 as well.
Week Six: Goal Setting Challenge
Challenge: Write down at least 1 goal for 2022, tell a friend about it, and start working towards it.
Goal setting can be challenging. To do it well, you must know yourself. But setting the goals is the least challenging part of the process. The real challenge begins when you start working towards your goals.
That’s why we want to make sure you get started on your journey with a good foundation. That means first and foremost writing it down. Writing it down will help keep you accountable and keep your goal at the forefront of your mind. Better yet put it up somewhere where you can see it.
Second, tell a friend about it. If you want to make a change, accountability is essential.
Choose your accountability partner wisely, someone that will hold you to your commitment. The ideal person will be positive, but firm, and hopefully have a goal of their own that they can look to you for accountability for.
Then begins the hardest part - working towards your goals! But, with your foundation in place, you’ll have a worthy goal, an accountability partner, and of course your Sunny family along the way.
Beyond New Year New You: How to Turn Your Goals into A Lifestyle
It’s fun to get wrapped up in the spirit of the ‘New Year, New You’ movement, but it’s important to remember to continue working towards your goals and being a ‘better’ you all year long.
In my conversation with Sunny Trainer Dana about goal setting, the concern with people focused on being a better version of themselves only in January was a major theme of our conversation.
“So, we’re talking about New Year, New You, which…I love that concept, but at the same time, I think it’s very important to do that throughout the year. Be you, be the authentic you, but work towards the better version that you can be every single day.” - DANA SIMONELLI
It’s time to be a better you. Not just in January, but every single day.
Make 2022 your best year yet. Let’s set some goals and get after this year. Come on, you know you want to!
Let me know your goals in the comments, and don’t forget to share your progress towards your goals by hashtagging #NewYearNewYouNewSunny and tagging us on social media. Let’s go Sunny family!