The start of a new year is, understandably, one of the most popular times to commit to new goals. If you’re serious about achieving those goals, it’s time to consider working with a health coach. Health coaches make it statistically more possible to achieve your holistic health goals—whether they’re related to weight loss, nutrition, mental health and more (you can check out compilations of all of the latest data in our Deep Dive library).
In fact, employees who work with a health coach are not only healthier and happier, but they’re also more productive and present. So, not only do health coaches make it possible to achieve your personal goals, but also increase your likelihood of achieving your work goals, too. Even better, science has suggested that just the process of setting and pursuing goals has improved happiness, giving you just one more reason (if you even needed it!) to set those goals with a health coach.
In today’s blog, we take a closer look at some of the science-backed philosophies and methodologies health coaches leverage to make goals more possible. So this year, if you’re ready to turn goal setting into goal getting, you know what to do – and we’ve got a coach just for you! Just ask your employer if they are already working with us.
Identify and maximize intrinsic motivators
Making the decision to set goals is a great first step. But committing to making them happen means setting the right goals—which is where health coaches can be pivotal. In fact, the latest research suggests that without intrinsic meaning, extrinsic goals don’t really feel that rewarding. So, the key to setting the right goals is making sure they connect to your values, whether that be showing up as a better family member, maintaining your independence, improving your self confidence, etc. So, how do health coaches get at the heart of powerful internal motivation, and direct these drivers towards our goals?
Health coaches leverage a tactic called motivational interviewing, which employs tools like open-ended questions, active listening, and affirmations to engage in empathetic, client-led dialogue that ultimately gets at the heart of their intrinsic motivation. It’s these motivators that provide the foundation for goals that will stick. Studies have shown motivational interviewing can have a significant effect on inspiring positive physiological (72%) and psychological (75%) outcomes, which is something we’ve seen when delivering health coaching to employees through our ongoing partnerships.
Assemble your “goal squad”
We’re very conditioned to believe that personal goals need to be solo endeavors. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Interestingly, science has shown you might be more likely to achieve your goals when you share them with someone who you see as an expert on that subject. Health coaches can step into this important role as accountability partners, goal setting experts, and holistic health resources. Not only do they check in on progress and encourage successes, but they also troubleshoot hurdles and opportunities with you to make sure you’re making the adjustments you need to accomplish your goals.
Health coaches also help you to identify the relationships in your life that are critical to achieving your endeavors or might be impeding them. They provide perspective and collaborate on setting an action plan so you know who to tap for support and how. For example, if you’re looking to get more movement, they can help you carve out opportunities and tap individuals who might be able to partner with you to make that happen.
Get to know your goals inside and out
While this might seem obvious at first, when we say know your goals we mean really get to know your goals. Dissect them. Analyze them. Refine them. Work them. What does this mean in practice? Health coaches work closely with clients to ladder goals back to the S.M.A.R.T. model, ensuring they’re specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound. This tried-and-true model has resulted in regular successes for clients and is consistently regarded as one of the most reliable goal-setting tools.
Relatedly, health coaches help clients break longer-term goals into bite-sized pieces that are easy to measure along the way, make your overarching plan more achievable, and are bound by smaller chunks of time. For example, if you’re hoping to work with a health coach to lower your A1C levels, maybe the first step is to reduce saturated fat consumption with checkpoints at the close of every month. Health coaches can help you optimize these strategies so you get to know your goals so well they become real.
We’re excited to continue working with our Industry Partners and their employees, clients and members to help them achieve their goals through health coaching. It’s never too late to commit to your goals. If you’re a company or employer looking to learn more about how we partner with organizations to deliver health coaching services, contact us at email@example.com