The Art of Setting Wellness Goals
With 2018 just around the corner, many people may be thinking about New Year’s resolutions. In fact, 41% of Americans set goals for the New Year. However, maintaining these changes can be a challenge. Of those that make resolutions, less than 10% feel they are successful. Read on for perspective on how to make lasting, sustainable changes to positively impact your well-being.
Metaphorically speaking, wellness goals can be an art with you as the masterpiece. Art is often an expression of something we deeply connect with. Many masterpieces have been created through reflection, perspective, vision, time, and little by little building upon the day’s prior work, further refining until satisfaction is realized. The masterpiece can then stand strong on its own. When setting wellness goals, think about yourself as being that empty canvas, clay to be molded, threads to be woven into a tapestry. What do you want to create? What do you connect to? What are your perspectives? What do you see?
Creating the Masterpiece
Many artists have a way they prepare, implement their process, and a specific style in which they create. They come to know what works for them, even if it isn’t what others believe are conventional. Consider taking the perspective of an artist at work, transforming your wellness goals into a masterpiece. Every artist has a toolbox supporting their work. Below are some tools to help you create your masterpiece.
- Reflect: What goals are important to you? Why? What emotional connection can you assign to the goal? A goal needs to have meaning and value to breathe life into it. Without it, the goal typically falls flat.
- Perspective: What are your perspectives on your goal? Are they positive, or do you associate deprivation, or fear of the unfamiliar with the goal? It is common for a goal to threaten what has been comfortable, familiar, or protective. Examining those perspectives for what they are, and putting strategies in place to manage them can be very helpful.
- Vision: What do you see for yourself in achieving the goal? What does it look like? How will it improve your life and those around you? Build a vision that is tangible to you.
- Time: How can you make time for your goal? Who can support you in keeping that time for your goal? What kind of mechanisms would be helpful to put in place to support your goal?
- Little by little: This is not a race. Masterpieces are created over the course of time. Establishing small steps out of a single goal helps prevent potential overwhelm. Add one step into your routine, and when assimilated, add another step. Over time, you will start to see a masterpiece of your own making emerge.
View additional information about goal setting here: https://news.illinoisstate.edu/2017/06/achieving-wellness-goals/
Creating the Community
Being part of a community in reaching wellness goals can be a significant asset in the manifestation and sustainability of goals. Driven by our own cultural influences, we often try to be self-made successes. However, the power of community provides accountability and the enjoyment of reaching goals with others. It’s a built-in mutual support system with a high success rate. We are fortunate to work on a college campus with campus community resources just outside our office doors. Here are some resources to consider exploring:
- The Lifestyle Enhancement Program offers yoga, tai’ chi, and mindfulness classes.
- Campus Recreation offers personal training, cardiovascular, strength building, and mind-body classes.
- Experience adventures with Activate Adventure through Campus Recreation.
- Wellness Walks offers weekly Wednesday 30 minute walks around the campus area.
- Employee groups such as table tennis, bowling league, and noon ball are available to join.
- Join in on the action and become a Wellness Ambassador building a community within your own department.
Don’t see something that intrigues you? Start your own idea and bring it to Health Promotion and Wellness for us to help you connect with the resources to make it happen.
Creating the Investment
Every day we make choices about what we prioritize and invest in for ourselves. Wellness goals will remain wellness goals unless we choose to prioritize and invest in them. Taking time to authentically invest thought and strategy into your goal can make the manifestation of the goal more realistic and easeful. Investment upfront often pays handsomely in the end. Carve out some time and allow yourself to be the artist of your future wellness. Your toolbox is waiting.
Challenge yourself to make YOU a priority!
SEVEN is a free program from Health Promotion and Wellness for students, faculty, and staff that focuses on the importance of the seven dimensions of wellness: emotional, environmental, intellectual, physical, social, spiritual, and vocational. SEVEN runs from September to the end of April, and you can join at any time. Participants log wellness activities to earn points toward monthly prize drawings and compete toward end of the year overall point totals. Participants also receive the SEVEN e-newsletter and information on campus wellness events. Additional support is available through our SEVEN Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/WellnessIllinoisState
For additional details and to sign up, visit Wellness.IllinoisState.edu/Seven.