top of page

Seven Transformative Goals for Personal Growth and Well-Being

Updated: Jan 16

Many of us wait for some milestone to begin the action steps that need to happen for change to occur. Perhaps the most popular milestone is New Year's and the famous New Year's resolution. A recent poll found these to be the most common resolutions: Eat better/lose weight; Exercise more; Spend less money; Self-care (e.g., getting more sleep); Read more books; Learn a new skill; Get a new job; Make new friends; New hobby; Focus more on appearance; Focus on relationship; Cut down on cigarettes/alcohol; Go on more dates; Focus less on appearance.

What I notice about these and most resolutions is that they call upon us to make a fundamental change in the core of our being—sometimes even shake up our values.

To achieve your resolution, I suggest focusing on different goals. Sure, it is good to have something tangible in mind, but the resolutions have a way of happening when you apply the following seven goals first.

1. Practice gratitude

When you begin focusing on what you have instead of what you do not, it can abolish insecurity. With less insecurity, your inner confidence begins to leak out and slowly starts taking over, making it easier to pick and choose what resolutions you wish to accomplish.

2. Resist the urge to judge

Me judge? Come on, not me! Maybe you, but I never judge. We all judge automatically and instinctively; it is in our DNA. It is our inherent drive, thanks to our primitive, animalistic automatic brain, to scan the landscape for would-be competitors (or predators back in the day of our cave-dwelling ancestors). When we judge, however, we put a lot of energy into what someone else possesses, and it takes us away from recognizing our gifts and talents.

3. Make forgiveness my first reaction

Our primitive brain, which I call the automatic brain or AB, makes us fight or flee potential danger, threat, or vulnerability. That is our initial reaction most of the time. So if someone does us wrong, one-ups, or disrespects us, our AB will cause us to fight or flee them, which usually looks like anger, passive-aggression, or avoidance, like the silent treatment. When we act in accordance with our higher mind, which I believe is the gateway to our Divine nature, it allows us to forgive. It doesn't mean to allow ourselves to be manipulated. No, it is an acknowledgment that the person is flawed, as are you and I. The flaw comes from their AB. If you wish to tap into your Divine nature instead, you will work on forgiving more and watch how much more peaceful and enjoyable your life becomes.

4. Be joyful for no reason

When asked, "What do you look for in a partner?" Many women respond, "Someone who makes me laugh." Maybe I'm a party pooper, but this line always strikes me as odd. Who does she want to date? A court jester? A circus clown? Indeed, a sense of humor is an excellent quality to have. However, it is a burden to make your happiness the responsibility of another person. Try making yourself laugh for absolutely no reason. Try laughing at something silly you did. Make a funny face in the mirror. Just choose to be joyful. It starts with walking around with a smile and standing up straight.

5. Fearlessly practice self-honesty

This is challenging, as most people think they are being honest. Nevertheless, we all hold tightly to previously established beliefs and biases. Even when they might not be based entirely in reality or shown to be false, we often dig our heels in and fight for them—consciously or unconsciously. Not being honest with yourself will sabotage any resolution. You must nurture the ability to call yourself for past and current mistakes. But also, you will need to engage #3 above and forgive yourself, too. Look honestly at your actions. Do they stem from jealousy? Regret? Blame? Resentment? Guilt? Worry? Insecurity? Be fearless in pursuit of your truth.

6. Practice self-discipline

If you genuinely wish to live free, you must practice and nurture this. Self-discipline will help you rise above the primitive, animalistic urges of your AB. When you do that, you face your higher mind, the gateway to your pure potential—who you are and were born to be. One of the objections told to me by overweight or obese patients is that they do not like watching what they eat—they are free to eat what they want without restriction. But in essence, they are not being honest because when we eat above sustenance (i.e., what we need to survive), it is because we are on autopilot, being driven by our automatic brain. Any addiction is this way. Nurture self-discipline and achieve the life that you were born to live.

7. Live with faith

Someone recently commented on this list by saying I lost him with this final entry. He is a devout atheist, and he found this goal insulting to his intelligence. As mentioned above, beliefs and biases have their way of altering our actions and digging our heels into the reality of our five senses, often blocking access to a beautiful world and life. One of the benefits of growing older is that I have a long list of previous worries that I can now look back on and see that they worked out okay. Maybe they did not work out precisely as I expected, but they did not turn out as my anxieties predicted. Living with faith is living with a belief that if my intentions are pure, then the right things will happen at the right time, for the right reasons, and will be exactly right for my family and me. Call that God, as do I, or something else—makes no difference. Just understand that processes are going on that we cannot comprehend and are working in our best interest.


These may not be the seven goals you would expect from a doctor. Perhaps you expected me to tell you that avoiding gluten will change your life. No, paying attention to your microbiome. No, that's not it; it's the paleo diet, the ketogenic diet, the plant paradox diet – pick one, and you will be happier, have better relationships, and have a better life. Well, I have learned in my long career that creating a positive attitude by instituting the above goals has more of a ripple effect of good health on your mind, body, and spirit, much more than any diet or pill.

© Dr. Charles F. Glassman, CoachMD

5 views0 comments


bottom of page