Insights & Actions for Healthy Living
Achieving Personal Health Goals: Finding Your Motivation

Achieving Personal Health Goals: Finding Your Motivation

Health goals, including weight loss, are something I have helped many people work to achieve in my career as a dietitian.

I provide expert advice on all aspects of achieving health goals, from creating your goals, designing realistic interventions to achieve your goals, and developing strategies that holistically address root causes of not being as healthy as you can.

Losing weight isn’t as easy as cutting down portions or everyone would be at their healthiest weight. Why we gain weight, why we can’t lose weight or why we regain the weight we worked so hard to lose is like an onion with many and varied layers.

It requires hard work, dedication and introspection to succeed on a daily basis!

I can educate, support and coach you toward achieving your health goals as a dietitian, but I can’t do it for you. There is no magic pill or fairy dust that I can give you. Over many years in my career, I have been asked to wave my magic wand and make it so. I wish I could!

Struggling with weight for health reasons and even self-esteem reasons is harder than those who aren’t struggling can imagine. When a person is successful, it is truly life changing!

We Know What’s Healthy & What Isn’t

We all know, at least to some extent, what is healthy and not healthy to eat, right?

We know eating a bag of chips with dip on a weekend afternoon watching the game isn’t the healthiest thing to do. We know candy bars from the vending machine every afternoon at 3 o’clock doesn’t top the list of healthy choices. We know drinking cans of sugar sweetened soda won’t help us shed pounds!

We also know that filling half our plates with colorful vegetables and choosing fruit for dessert can add to making a healthy meal. We know we need to eat protein but should avoid frying it every time. We know drinking plenty of water and including enough foods with fiber every day is the smart thing to do. We know eating the right portion sizes will help us manage our energy intake while we exercise and stay active to strike a balance with energy output.

So why don’t we do what we know is best for us – – what gets in the way of our success?

Overcoming External Obstacles

Most of us have roadblocks that come from outside forces, obstacles we must overcome to achieve our health goals.

  • co-workers who have candy jars on their desks
  • the fast food place with the convenient drive-through that’s on the way home
  • the goodies your mom made especially for you
  • the church social with delicious-looking things you never make at home
  • the kids who are screaming for ice cream
  • _____ fill in your own personal obstacle here

These obstacles and more will rise up to trip you every time — but only if you let them. You know it but somehow still let them do it.

How you plan to deal with your external obstacles should be part of your health plan. Will you bring your own dinner to the church social, will you choose the grilled chicken wrap in the drive through instead of the fried chicken sandwich, will you say no thank you to the co-worker, and will you get ice cream for them and water for you? Will you have a family meeting and explain your meal plan and your health goals to everyone including your mom and ask that they help you on your journey instead of add to your temptation?

Will you make a week’s menu detailing the healthy food choices you want to make, buy the food on your menu and make time to cook the meals you chose?

What are your personal obstacles to success – – and how will you overcome the challenges they impose?

All foods can fit into your weight loss and health goals if you plan them into it. When you leave the meal to the last minute or let someone else lead the way, your goals will invariably suffer.

You have to be the driver of your own health success, but how do you do that?

Motivation Comes from Within

What’s the secret to successfully overcoming obstacles and achieving our health goals? Having the key to that mystery would also unlock a bank vault!

I can advise people on achieving their health goals, offering my wisdom and experience, but I can’t do the hard work for them.

The hard work is something you have to do yourself — and doing it is what makes reaching our goals an achievement to celebrate.

There must be some motivation within that is driving you to do the right thing and choose the right options to be healthy, lose weight, control diabetes, etc.

Motivation to achieve our goals can only come from within us. Others can’t motivate us, but they can help us spark that fire within us that makes us want so much to achieve our goals that we find a way to overcome the obstacles we encounter.

Avoiding temptation, whether it is the doughnuts someone brought to work or the TV show that keeps us from visiting the gym, has to be the number one option if you want to reach your goals.

Successfully Achieving Your Health Goals

You have taken the time and put in the effort to set your health goals and also the action plan that can help you be successful. You clearly want to reach the finish line that marks the achievement of your goals.

Just HOW much you want to achieve them, though, will be reflected in your commitment to doing the tough things and overcoming the obstacles that stand between you and your finish line.

Have you truly committed yourself to your health goals so that your inner motivation can take over? Have you formed your team who will help you through the temptations and support your journey? Have you found a buddy to join you for physical activity and keep you moving when you don’t feel like it? These actions will help you get one step closer to achieving your goals.

You can do it! Your health and well-being are more important than the ice cream or fried chicken! Love yourself enough to beat the obstacles and overcome the temptations!

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