Managing Small, Bite-sized Health Goals That are Attainable
By Karen Sammer
Karen Sammer is a certified nutritional consultant and holistic health coach. She works with women who are living with or at risk for developing heart disease or other chronic illnesses to prevent or even reverse their disease. She is also a social marketer for a line of superior health and wellness products.
Karen works with people to prioritize what's important in their lives and to help them develop the mindset to know that they are capable of doing anything that they put their mind to.
When clients come to Karen, oftentimes they have gotten some news from the doctor or they want to prevent getting news from the doctor that isn't good for them. She tries to find out from them what would be the consequence for them not taking action at this point if they keep doing what they're doing. Where are they going to be in three months, six months or in a year? What is that going to look like for them? When they know that they're headed down a path of self-destruction at some point it gives them an idea of what they want to avoid. Karen focuses on what is going to make them take action.
How Would You Address Setting Goals?
Karen uses a five-prong program that she developed. It includes working with your:
- Emotional health
These components are really important for sustainable weight loss and success and bringing down climbing cholesterol numbers or climbing blood pressure or unstable blood sugar. Karen offers this program for you to help get those numbers in line so that you no longer have to worry about having to take medication. Once you've established these different changes in your life and you start to see improvement, you may actually be able to reduce or even completely stop taking the medication.
This is important, especially for women, because they tend to become busy taking care of other people and put themselves at the bottom of the list. It's important to put yourself at the top of the list because you can't pour from an empty cup.
Gain control of what you eat
10 years ago, she lost 135 pounds by giving up processed sugar, and that sets the stage for her success and in any area of weight loss. It’s by getting your health in order. Sugar causes inflammation in our body and it ends up being the basis of many diseases including cancer, heart disease, and many other things. When we can cool that inflammation in our body, that sets the stage for a very positive outcome. You gain control of what you eat a lot more easily than if you were to modify or to moderate or to just limit your sugar. You have to eliminate it from your diet if you really want to be successful. Food is manufactured to make you keep coming back for more. Otherwise, those companies wouldn't stay in business. That substance in there is very addictive. A lot of times the chemistry of the food is not compatible with a healthy body so it’s important to make sure that you're making the right choices.
When Karen coaches her clients, they take it a little bit at a time. She believes small incremental changes are often more sustainable than trying to ”eat the elephant”. You can't make wholesale changes in your entire life because it becomes too overwhelming. You want to make sure that you take these small steps towards the goals that you want. Making it manageable for the person by giving them small bite-sized goals that it is attainable.
When working with a six-month individual program with clients, they set three goals a week and meet once a week, then hold them accountable for those goals the following week. If goals are not met, they figure out why and switch them a little bit or maybe go a completely different direction. It’s all about the person's success and what is going to work for them.
What causes us to eat food is emotion, lifestyle, and stress is another issue.
When Karen was diagnosed with an aggressive form of breast cancer, she went through a miserable time being treated for that and that's when she decided that she had to do something to take hold of her health. She did some research and found out that processed sugar is cancer's best friend. So she took that out of her diet to minimize the risk of recurrence and that's what actually made the weight come off almost effortlessly. It was such a game-changer for her.
How you view your weight
One of the things that Karen likes to do is to take the emotion out of the number on the scale. Because when people are emotionally connected to that number, they determine how they're going to feel about themselves based on that. She finds it very helpful because the number on the scale just becomes a number. That number going down means you're getting healthier but it isn't something that is going to make you a good person or a bad person. It's not going to make you successful or unsuccessful in your life. It is strictly your relationship to gravity.
That number on the scale is nothing other than how much that gravitational pull is working on your body. Unfortunately, that gravitational pull also works on your joints and your muscles so you do want that number to be lower. Karen is very successful in taking these approaches with her clients.
Role of an Accountability Partner
“One of the things that keep me going is the fact that I have to be an example to my clients. For my own health goals, I make sure that I walk my talk but as far as my business goes, I like keeping myself accountable. I do have accountability partners, in fact, Paul is one of them. I have accountability partners that I meet with on a regular basis and it really helps to keep me focused.”
You can get some feedback from your accountability partner and it may be an area where they have more experience than you do. They can help to redirect your focus or give you some ideas on how to tighten up what your process is. Having an accountability partner is a very good idea if your business is all over the map. When we're teaching someone else, we're also learning and we're holding ourselves to a standard that maybe we wouldn't if we didn't have the responsibility to the people that we're trying to bring along. We're a community.
“Human beings are pack animals. We all rely on each other, we're interrelated, we're all connected, we are one energy. We should utilize that connection in a positive way instead of being mean to each other. We should reunite and support each other.”
If we are more collaborative than we are competitive, we can raise consciousness and raise ourselves all up. So holding each other accountable to stay connected and to stay in a high position is really an important and very positive way to look at how we conduct ourselves. Community is everything. No man is an island. We all need to be here for each other.
Know Your "Why"
Identify what the person's reasoning was for setting the goal in the first place to bring them back to the WHY. The “why” is the most powerful thing. If you know why somebody wants to accomplish a particular goal, you can always bring them back to that. When you identify a goal that you want and then as you go on and that memory fades, bring yourself back to the “why”.
“I like what Denel was saying about just writing things down and having them posted visibly where you are in your space. Put your goal where it's prominent in your visual field so that you see it all the time.”
Why that goal is important is because it becomes more of a priority. If you have it prominently visible, you know exactly why it is that you set that goal in the first place, and will help to keep you more motivated.
- Your weight is your relationship to gravity and nothing more so try to keep the emotion out of it. But that doesn't mean you shouldn't pay attention to it.
- Cutting out animal meat from your diet is a huge contributor to good health outcomes but it doesn't have to be the only thing.
- Exhaust other options before you go on pharmaceuticals but also set yourself up for small meaningful goals.
- Make sure that you have attainable goals along the way to your bigger goal. You may have a goal of 100 pounds to lose but you can lose it in five-pound increments
- Give yourself a non-food-related reward. It could be a massage, a hot bath, a nice long walk by yourself, and reading a book without interruption.
- Acknowledge your accomplishments.
- Take care of yourself.
Achieving these small goals is going to take you to the next goal. So filling your own cup before you try to fill other people's is really important. You have to take care of yourself before you can take care of anybody else.
January 2022 Lunch and Learn Event: Goal Setting
- Closing The Gap Between Goal Setting and Goal Achievement
- Why Goal Setting is Important?
- Aim for Progress to Reach Goals, not Perfection