7 Steps to Success

29 10 2010

Good morning and Happy Halloween in advance.  I hope everyone is seeing some progress with their goals of improving their health.   Thanks to Brian Jeffs for contributing some great content.  Check his great recommendations out under “comments” for the “Baby Step” post.  And remember, if you haven’t subscribed to the blog through the RSS feed you might be missing good stuff.  If anyone has questions about that, please let me know.

I wanted to pass along a basic coaching model that we use in health coaching when working with clients.  I have used it with myself successfully as well.  Here goes:

1.  What do you want to accomplish? Set some goals.  Of  course we could spend all day talking about how to set effective goals, but that is a topic for later.  If you want some more info, research SMART goals.  Examples of this might be, to lose 25 pounds, to run a marathon, to eat 5 servings of veggies a day, to drink more water, to quit smoking, etc.

2.  Create Emotion. When you reach your goal, what will that feel like?  What will that look like?  How will you benefit?  What will your family (kids, husband, wife, etc.) say and feel about you?  What would it feel like if you didn’t reach your goal, and just stayed where you are now?  Don’t be afraid to be frank and honest with yourself.  Emotion is the primary mover.  Note:  there are basically 2 categories of emotion that can fuel action towards a goal – pain and pleasure.  We move towards pleasure, and away from pain.  Moving away from pain has been shown to be a more powerful motivator, and it is more appropriate early in the stages of change (more on stages of change later).  So don’t be afraid to use pain as a motivator.   What would it feel like if I continued to smoke?  How would this affect my family?  What is this doing to my health right now?  How will this impact me seeing my own grandchildren grow up? Find what has a powerful impact for you and use that!

3.  Where are you now? In relation to your goal.  E.g. how much exercise do you get now?  What is your weight?  How much water do you currently drink?  What sort of activity and attention are you currently contributing to this area of your life.  How do you feel about yourself in relation to where you are now (creating more emotion).

4.  Uncover Blocks.  What have you tried before and why didn’t it work?  What is in your way of success now?  What are other hurdles you must overcome?  E.g.  All my buddies smoke.  Eating is a major social activity for my extended family, I will be an outsider if I change this activity.  I have to eat (drink, smoke) to relieve stress when I get home from work.  Nobody will help me in my efforts to exercise.

5.  BABY STEP: What one small step can I do, just above thinking about it, that I absolutely cannot fail at? E.g.  Research local gym memberships, find a near-by marathon several months away, find online support groups for smoking cessation, set aside a time to talk to your spouse about your goal, why it’s important to you , and what they can do to help.  After you successfully complete one Baby Step, it’s time to determine your next.  Build success upon success to keep you positive, motivated, and moving towards your overall goal.

6.  Support: Who can help you?  What resources do you need / have?  Are you willing to ask for that support / resource?  What kind of support and resources have you used in the past that have worked / not worked?

7.  Accountability: How will you hold yourself accountable?  Who will you let know about your baby steps, when you accomplish them, success and failures?  How will you communicate, and by when?

That’s the 7 steps.  For me, I have worked through the 7 step process for starting this blog (not a health-related goal, but it still works).  Steps 1-4 are mostly static, but steps 5 – 7 I repeat frequently.  Choose a baby step, decide what help I need to succeed, notify my accountability partner of when and how I plan to have completed the step, complete it and then go back to Step 5 and repeat the process.  I now need to do the same with a couple of health related goals that I have, and will make those public here, when I have.   Hope that there is some value there for you.  As always I welcome feedback and comments.  Please step up if you want to add anything or make suggestions as to how this might be more helpful.  If it is a personal comment and something you don’t necessarily want posted, just let me know – I have to approve all the comments before they show up anyway.  Have a wonderful weekend and most Happy Halloween.

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2 responses

29 10 2010
Dane Treat

For those of you who are participating and have left comments regarding your intentions, you are more than welcome to send me any work you do on your goals, whether it is using these 7 steps, or some other process. Let me know if I can help you in any way. Looking forward to your success!

29 10 2010
Brian Jeffs

What a great read Dane. Thank you so much for putting this together, if you apply the 7 steps above I feel you will not only life a healthier but also a happier life as well..great job Dane.

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