Establish a Practice and Let the Goals take care of Themselves

A goal's main concept is that it has a beginning and an end, with specific action steps in between. Many people believe that it is all about achieving a certain goal. However, the aftermath of achieving a goal is sometimes more important than the goal itself.

When establishing a goal, the action steps not to reverse the goal are just as crucial as the steps reaching that goal.

So, what happens if you reach your goal, such as dropping 20 pounds? What are your plans for the future?

For most, it means going back to “normal” which may have been the reason that got us 20 pounds overweight to begin with.

Here’s why you should establish a practice instead of just a goal

Rather than making short term or long term goals, why not establish a practice. A practice is something that you continue to… well, practice. A practice isn’t about arriving at a destination, it is the journey.

Michael has a practice of eating a healthy breakfast everyday. Thomas has a practice of starting every morning with a cigarette and looking at Facebook. Karen has a practice of walking her dogs every morning and evening (even in the rain). Jenny makes it a practice to look for something she likes in everyone she encounters. Bonnie takes one deep breath before she eats. I even saw a documentary of a guy who made it a practice to spend some part of his day swimming with an octopus (until she died).

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The possibilities are endless.

A practice is essentially a habit. It can be good for us or bad for us. A practice has a starting point at any given moment. Practice isn’t about what you can achieve. A practice is about how it changes you.

When Martha discovered she had breast cancer, she made it a practice to cut out sugar and break a sweat every day. It was advice from her doctor that she decided to make a practice. When she began she just wanted to recover from breast cancer. She didn’t know she was going to end up 80 pounds lighter and a health and wellness coach.

Had Martha decided to achieve the goal of losing 80 pounds it would have been a very different experience. She would have been measuring her progress, judging her performance, and feeling miserable every step of the way.

Instead, she trusted in her doctor’s advice and just practiced.

Instead of making another New Year’s Resolution, how about establishing a practice? And why wait until January first? You can start right now.

Have you checked out our new podcast, where we interview professionals on how to become healthier and lose weight? Subscribe here!

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