Goal Setting Mindset – the importance of keeping it simple


It is not unusual to have a client come in to see me and tell me how they have failed this week, how they just can’t do it. Interestingly when I chat to them, I often find that they have had a great week, had lots of wins but they don’t perceive it that way because they choose to focus on one or two “slip-ups”.


The story we tell ourselves is really powerful, it is important to remember that it is just that, a story. You can choose to tell a different story, you can choose to focus on what you have achieved and what you are doing well “the glass half full”. Rather than only focusing on the “glass half empty” and all of your perceived “failures”. Failure must be removed from our vocabulary, rather than say you have failed or been “bad”, you can re-word that as an area that still needs improvement.


One of the biggest causes of this is unrealistic expectations. If you have a giant to do list of 30 or 40 things you must do to improve your health this week and you achieve most of them, you may still perceive that as a failure. This sense of failure will discourage you and lead to quitting; it is just how our brains work. This type of list is just too overwhelming!


It is more realistic to have a small list of 1-4 goals depending on how challenging they are to you at the time. When you tick off all of these achievements, you feel good about yourself, you feel successful. This success created momentum, contributing to your ability to stay on track and stay motivated and will likely encourage you to keep kicking goals, each of which will feel like an added extra success.


It is important to remember that the quality of your health is dependent on the quality of your habits. The focus needs to be on bringing in healthy habits over time so they become new habits. These will naturally begin to replace the unhealthy habits and it will happen slowly and naturally. Slow and steady really does win the race!


Notice the story you are telling yourself and change it! Long term health changes need to begin with self-compassion; it is about nurturing and nourishing yourself to health. You can’t hate yourself to health; you have probably tried it many times and know it doesn’t work! Einstein defined insanity as “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”. It is time for you to try something different!


Fiona Kane, Nutritionist, Holistic Counsellor & Life Coach