We hope all our readers have enjoyed some very happy holidays and are anxiously anticipating 2020! Are you ready for the celebration? If you are a procrastinator (or just exhausted from the festivities throughout December), we’re here to help you set those last–minute New Year’s resolutions.
For most people, choosing a resolution isn’t the hard part, it’s sticking to the resolution that proves to be a challenge. Even if you are committed early on, it can be easy to drop the “healthy eating” habit or trips to the gym a few weeks in when progress has stalled or life feels too busy. To help our Josey Lane Dentistry patients in and around Carrollton achieve their resolutions this year, we’ve laid out the SMART method that has been proven to make goals stick.
If you happen to still be looking for a solid New Year’s resolution, we suggest one that can boost your oral health. (So shoot us.) In addition to the satisfaction of achieving your goal, having a brighter smile isn’t a bad benefit, either!
The SMART method
A SMART goal is used to help guide how you set goals. SMART is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely. Therefore, a SMART goal incorporates all of these to help focus your efforts and increase the chances of achieving that goal.
S – Specific
Goals that are specific have a significantly greater chance of being accomplished. Therefore, don’t set the goal of “reducing sugar” to promote better oral health; instead, choose something more specific, like cutting out all sodas during the week, or limiting yourself to one soda a week. Define the specifics of your goal by asking yourself: who, what, when, where and why you want to achieve the goal.
M – Measurable
You must have criteria for measuring your progress. If there are no criteria, you will not be able to determine success or if you’re even on track to reach your goal.
A – Achievable
While it’s great to have lofty goals, it’s also important to choose a resolution that is attainable. The achievability of the goal should be stretched to make you feel challenged, but pragmatic enough that you can actually achieve it. Sticking with our example resolution of kicking the sugary beverage habit, it might not be realistic for you to go cold turkey. That’s why it’s important to remember the specificity you identified above when mapping out steps toward your ultimate goal.
R – Realistic
Your resolution should be realistic in that the goal can be achieved given the available resources (including your mental energy). One question to ask yourself is: are you able to commit to achieving your goal? This will determine if this goal within reach.
T – Timely
Finally, your goal must be time–bound, meaning it must have a definite beginning and end. This ensures you aren’t punting your start date to “begin the next Monday,” and then the next, and then the next.
Do you already have a 2020 New Year’s resolution in mind? Have you made sure it’s a “SMART” resolution? Start the conversation with us today so we can cheer you on!