February 21, 2018
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Health goals for 2018

By: Dawn Dolan
January 19, 2018

Is one of your goals for this year to “get in shape,” to lose weight, to have more energy, or overall to experience “optimal health”? If so, you are not alone. This is one of the most common goal sets made every year at this time. It is also one of the goal sets with the least amount of follow-through and, therefore, the lowest success rate. How do you change this to produce the success you desire?

It is most common to begin the year with a fairly strict regime of diet and exercise and to be elated with the loss of unwanted pounds and unwanted inches of stored fat. These may even stay gone for a time. Then, slowly, we relax our regime and the unwanted extra pounds of fat and loss of muscle tone return. Discouragement surely follows.

Still, there are those who have succeeded in changing their habits and improving body composition and overall health. There is a secret to their success. Would you like to know their secret? You could discover this secret for yourself if you follow a few key steps, this secret will reveal itself to you with seeming miraculous results.  

To start with, make a few written notes that you can refer to later when the need arises. Think of a time when you felt vibrantly healthy, energized and alive. Describe this scene in great detail until it becomes crystal clear and alive in your mind’s eye. Resolve to revisit this scene every morning and every evening for the coming six weeks. Do this without fail as it is the single most important step in this process.

Next, make a list of your good habits and behaviors that contribute to your overall well-being. Be specific. Look at the times that you choose healthy foods, spent time in a stress-free environment and moved your body properly. See and experience how you felt about yourself at these times. What else comes to mind?

Find a paper or electronic space to calendar your activities for the next six weeks. Every day include at least one item in each category that you will absolutely do. For example, list what the menu for a healthy meal would be, what physical activity you will do, how you will relieve unwanted stress, etc.

Be sure to put something, perhaps a picture that reminds you of your “most alive self,” where you will be sure to see it every morning and every evening. As this moves along over the course of the next six weeks and certainly by the end of that time, do send us a note to let us know if the secret has revealed itself to you.

Dawn Dolan, MA, ACN is an advocate for integrative healthcare, consulting with medical doctors, chiropractors, acupuncturists, psychotherapists, body workers, massage therapists and other healthcare professionals. She can be reached by email at