Help Me Help You By Chris Freytag
Accountability is one of the most helpful ways to reach a goal. Most executives and managers are well-trained in holding others and themselves accountable on the job, but when it comes to their own health, they sometimes fall short of plan.
An article in The Wall Street Journal, titled “The Power of a Gentle Nudge,” validated what I have believed to be true for years. The article states: “A growing body of research shows that small amounts of social support, ranging from friends who encourage each other via e-mail to occasional meetings with a fitness counselor, can produce large and lasting gains against one of America’s biggest health problems—physical inactivity.”
Bottom line of the article: “When you knew you were going to have to report back on what you had done, it motivated you.” A little prodding and gentle nudging can provoke action and improve compliance to healthier lifestyle habits.
In the social media world, I use my Facebook business page, Twitter and LinkedIn to continually provide people with a gentle nudge (in the form of tips, inspiration, articles and advice) to keep moving and investing in their own health. As one Facebook follower wrote, “Your daily posts shame me into never skipping my workout. When low on motivation, I check your Facebook page and read the posts and comments.” While I tend to be from the camp of positive motivation versus negative motivation, if she says I shame her into compliance, I’ll take it.
I hear from people all the time that my posts of encouragement help them stay on track or push them not to skip their workouts. It’s the nudge they need to keep their own health top of mind. When you connect with people who are regularly writing about their workouts and their results, you will be pushed, I mean nudged, to do the same!
You also can use social media to be accountable for your goals by declaring them to the world. Once you put it “out there” you can’t take it back. It’s a great way of making yourself accountable and putting your commitment on the line. You can enlist your friends to support you on your journey.
Millions of people connect through social media websites to provide or receive motivation in many areas of life. If there is an aspect of your life that needs improvement, find an expert that inspires you and follow them, friend them or read them. Since we all need to be efficient with our time, having go-to online sources for personal and professional needs is not only smart—it’s mandatory for survival.
If fitness is an area of your life that needs a constant push, connect to me in the social media world and I’ll do my best to provide virtual support and a virtual nudge. As the article stated, “A light touch can have a lasting effect.”
In the words of Jerry Maguire (one of my all-time favorite movies): “Help me help you!”
Chris Freytag is a health and fitness expert, author and speaker. She has been teaching fitness classes and personal training for over 20 years. She is a contributing editor for Prevention Magazine; the fitness contributor for the NBC affiliate in Minneapolis; and Chairman of the Board of Directors for the American Council on Exercise. Chris has authored 5 books; has created dozens of fitness DVD’s; and sells her signature line of healthy kitchen and fitness products on QVC. Connect with Chris at www.chrisfreytag.com www.Facebook.com/ChrisFreytagpage or on Twitter @ChrisFreytag