I am an advocate of using the Transtheoretical Stages of Change Model when working with my clients.
It is possible that when we brainstorm with our clients to create SMART goals, the goals may be too ambitious. Behavior change is very difficult.
It might be a good idea to work on “thinking” goals first as opposed to “doing”goals so that the client makes the change progressively and achieves more successes as far as behavior change is concerned.
Once we learn that their level of confidence, commitment and readiness are low, particularly after he/she hasn’t be successful in reaching goals they’ve personally set for themselves, it is a clue to use that the goals may be too challenging and that we may need to make the goals more realistic.
It might be an opportunity for the personal trainer to learn a little bit more about self-efficacy so that he/she can learn techniques and strategies to help his/her client improve in this aspect of behavior change.