The Busy Person’s Guide to Setting Health Goals

When your to-do list never ends, finding time to focus on your health can feel impossible. You don’t have an extra hour to hit the gym or batch cook meals. (And, if you did have an extra hour, you’d spend it sleeping.)

Omada was designed for people like you because it doesn’t require a big time commitment or drastic, energy-draining changes. The goal of Omada is to help you lose weight and lower your risk of diabetes and heart disease without turning your life upside down.

How? With these 3 steps:

1. Work with the time you have.

2. Experiment with small, healthy changes.

3. Stick with the ones that fit your life.

It may sound a little too simple, but it’s an effective strategy. Focusing on what you can do is the key to reaching your goals without getting overwhelmed and giving up.

 

Think Minutes, Not Hours

You may not have a free hour in your day, but you probably have 15 minutes to spare. That’s more than enough to start building healthy habits.

To figure out when you might squeeze in a little food prep or light activity, do this exercise:

Draw a weekly schedule on a piece of paper (or use an online calendar). Divide each day into 15-minute segments and write in what you usually do during that time. Then put a number in each segment:

1 for a high-priority task

2 for a medium-priority task

3 for for low-priority task

4 if that segment is free time

Your high-priority tasks shouldn’t be limited to work and important errands. Quality time with family and friends is worthy of a 1, along with any other activity that means a lot to you. (If you consider the hour you spend watching TV after dinner a necessary pleasure, give it a 1.)

How many 4s did you end up with? If any are at a time of day when you have more energy, they’re prime spots to devote to your health.

If you have no promising 4s, take a look at your 3s. Would you be willing to spend that time improving your health instead?

Whatever time you end up with, start there. Don’t feel guilty if it’s not much. It doesn’t take long to start a few habits that you can build on in the coming weeks.

 

Set Small Goals

Now that you’ve found room in your schedule, your next step is to set one or more small, specific goals to tackle in the time you have.

When we say small, we’re not kidding. Your first goals in Omada should be so tiny, they’re a little embarrassing.

Why make the goal so small? The smaller the goal, the less time and motivation it takes to accomplish. And every goal you accomplish fuels your motivation to do more.

Below are some of examples of how you can transform big, time-consuming goals into approachable, small ones:

Big goal: Workout everyday for twenty minutes.

Small goal: Walk for five minutes after lunch.

Big goal: Pack a healthy lunch every day.

Small goal: Take a piece of fruit with you tomorrow.

Big goal: Stop getting fast food for dinner.

Small goal: Swing by the grocery store for a rotisserie chicken.

At the end of each lesson in Omada, you’ll be invited to select 1-2 small goals to focus on for the week.

Start with the ones you want to work on (not what you think you should work on), and you’ll quickly gain momentum that will carry you toward your goals.