I have gone through many seasons where I used tools to track things related to my wellness. Sometimes it’s tracking what I eat, exercise, stress, symptoms, medications, or progress of a goal. When working towards any new habit we have to put our attention towards making changes or choosing ways to support the new way of life. Writing and tracking my new habit on paper has been the most successful way for me to track wellness goals. I am a life long “journaler” and love to use writing as a way to process, to track, and to plan.
Why Use A Health Tracker?
Developing any new habit can be difficult. It takes time for our brain and body to adjust to the new way of living. The best tool to use when working on a new habit is using the tool of attention. So often as we live our life on auto pilot and we revert back to old habits. Because of this starting any new habit means we have to pay attention. Using a health tracker can help bring intentionality to the everyday choices we make about what we eat and how often we exercise. Being intentional and purposeful in our choices allows us to make decisions that supports the goals we are trying to accomplish. A health tracker can be an invaluable tool when planning for your health, tracking aspects of your wellness, and progressing towards your goals.
My Common Mistakes With Health Goals
There are mistakes that I’ve made when using a health tracker and making health goals that have derailed my progress.
- Expecting Perfection: there have been times when I planned things out in my health tracker and everything was going well, but then I make a mistake. It could be that I ate that piece of cake or sweet I had been craving, or I didn’t do the exercise I planned for the day, or I got take out instead of eating what I had meal planned. Sometimes when these mistakes happen I would get so discouraged that I would just want to quit and give up on using the health tracker or feel like a failure. DON’T QUIT!!! We are human. We make mistakes and sometimes we just don’t make the best choices, but it’s okay!! Your goal isn’t ruined, you are not a failure, and your hard work is not cancelled out. We all go through this and it’s totally normal. Just make the next right choice. So what, lunch didn’t go as planned, maybe dinner will be better or maybe tomorrow will be better. Just keep going!! Your health is worth it! You are worth it!
- Making Vague Goals: I often have these big ideas of things I would like to work on, but I forget to break my big goals into measurable small goals. For example, if you are wanting to lose 100lbs, that’s an awesome goal, but a bit overwhelming. How can you break that into measurable small goals? It could be that you are going to make a goal of losing 1lb per week instead of the big goal. Having small victories makes it easier to work towards our big goals.
- Being Obsessed with Weight: There have been times when I’ve been working on being healthy and I get totally consumed by what the scale is saying. There have even been times when loved ones in my life had to hide the scale from me because I was so consumed by the numbers. I have found that I am much more successful when I make goals around behaviors rather than weight. For example, eating 4 servings of vegetables a day, or having only having one sweet treat per month, or exercising four times a week. These kinds of goals work much better for me because weight fluctuates for many reasons.
Health Tracker Features
There a variety of features to look for in a health tracker depending on what your goals are. Here is a walk-through of a health tracker that I created and the features.
These are affiliate links for items I have bought for my health tracker.