You’ve reached the final installment of our goal-setting series which means you’re in great shape to the start the New Year off right! So far, we’ve discussed setting a long term goal, addressing obstacles between now and where you want to be in a year, and breaking your long term goal into smaller chunks. The final step is making sure you achieve each of those smaller goals!
#1 - Planning the celebration
Planning the celebration is just as important as all the other planning you have done to this point. Having those moments of celebration sprinkled in throughout the year is what helps to keep you motivated to reach the bigger goal you have set for yourself.
In the clinic, we work together to set your goal for what you want to get out of Physical Therapy. And, then we have a mini party every time you achieve a smaller goal that is going to lead to the bigger one. Let’s say that you are suffering with low back pain and your bigger goal is to return to playing golf. We will have mini celebrations when you are able to sleep through the night pain free, walk up stairs pain free, get into the car without aggravating your low back pain, when you are able to move throughout your day without aggravating your symptoms, and when you start the exercise program that is going to get you back on the golf course. Of course, the final celebration is getting to play a round of golf with your friends without crippling low back pain.
It’s important to celebrate even the small victories because that is the brain reward needed to keep going towards your bigger goal. You are acknowledging the progress you have made so far in achieving what you want in life. You may be thinking that it’s silly to celebrate the smaller success when you are so far from your bigger goal. Let me assure you, research has proven that celebrating the smaller victories leads to greater success with the bigger goal.
#2 - Create an accountability team!
Another thing to put in place to help improve your long term success in reaching your goal is to have some accountability partners. Identifying and communicating with people who are willing and able to keep you focused can make a huge different in motivation. Your accountability team can be anyone who will hold you accountable for the things you really need to be doing, redirect your focus if you’re pouring all your energy into less crucial tasks, see things you’re not seeing, and sometimes give you the thumbs up (or down).
These are people who you can trust to hold you to meeting your goal. Ask your accountability partners to reach out to you regularly to see how you are moving towards your goal. Have them be people who you can explain your plan to and review where you are regularly.
And, make sure that these are people who will not let you “off the hook” when you are not moving towards your goals. We all have friends who will let us slide when we sleep in one morning instead of going for a walk or when we eat that bag of potato chips while we are watching a movie. Those are not the friends you want on this particular team. Find people who will hold you accountable to your goals and ask you about them regularly. This external review will help you stay on track toward meeting your goals and improve your chances of meeting them.
Each time you meet a small goal, celebrate it and attach it to the bigger goal. This will help you to see how far you have come already and reinforce that you are moving towards that bigger goal. It helps to keep you motivated and moving forward while decreasing the risk of sliding backwards.
If you have any health-related goals, a Physical Therapist can be a great addition to your accountability team.
Don’t work with people who simply put band aids on the problem in the form of drugs or quick fixes. Work with someone who is willing to dig in and find a real solution, support you along the way, and hold you accountable for the time and energy that you need to invest in your health as well!
If you’re interested in adding a Specialist Physical Therapist to your accountability team, you can reach out anytime or even request a time to talk to one of our Specialists for FREE.
#3 - Share your progress with people who care!
As you embark on the journey of a new year, don’t forget to share your progress in reaching your goals! At Physical Therapy for everyBODY, we’d LOVE to hear what you’re doing to better your health in 2021. Keep us updated on Facebook and Instagram so that we can be your personal cheering section all year long!
Let us be the first to say CONGRATULATIONS on taking the first steps toward your goal. We are excited for your journey and look forward to celebrating your success. Enjoy your journey!