This seems to be a defining characteristic of our modern era: put fires out, don’t plan or forsee for them.
And new years resolutions is exactly that. I am going to indulge now until that date. Then I am going to do more. I am going to be more and achieve more. Yes, from the first of January it is a clean slate and shits going to happen for me, I can feel it.
Well, I call bullshit. New Year’s resolutions don’t work!
According to U.S. News & World Report, the failure rate for New Year’s resolutions is said to be about 80 percent, and most lose their resolve by mid-February. If this is true, it’s clear that there is nothing wrong with us; the problem is in the tradition itself.
The time is now
There is no better time to get your shit together than before the new year. It makes sense though right? You wouldn’t prepare for a marathon the day it starts? You wouldn’t buy your groceries when the people arrive for a dinner party? You plan BEFORE.
Likewise, if you want to have a banging super productive year, surely you should plan for it?
How to plan for your new year
Its pretty simple. So simple it actually hurts to acknowledge. The secret to planning for the year that is going to be YOUR year?
Know what you want.
We all want to have the “best year ever” but what does that even mean? How can you orientate your actions and decisions around something so vague? To have the best year of your life, you need to plan for it. You have to set some goals out (achievable ones – becoming the next YouTube star takes a lot more than you think).
Define your goals for the year clearly.
- What do I want?
- How can I break up those goals into smaller more achievable steps?
- What character traits do I need to achieve that goal?
- What other steps do I need to take to make the goal attainable?
You want a promotion this year.
- What do I want? I want a promotion.
- How can I break up those goals into smaller more achievable steps? I need to put more hours in, do some skill development and studying in the field of my promotion.
- What character traits do I need to achieve that goal? What kind of traits does that role require? Maybe I have to develop my leadership skills? Perhaps patience is required in that role? My boss mentioned that only people with a high tolerance for failure are good, how can I develop that?
- What other steps do I need to take to make the goal attainable? How can I show my boss that I am interested, not through words but actions? What extra steps can I take in my free time to ensure that I am the right person for that promotion?
And most importantly…
Motive is the single most important point in achieving anything. Do you think Elon Musk doesn’t have a strong motive for achieving what he does? Or Nelson Mandela didn’t have a compelling motive to rise as he did?
The “why” is what propels us forward in the face of adversity, stress, failure, loss and let down. It’s what pulls us to go further and harder. To endure the struggles. The “why” is the shining light at the end of the tunnel. No goals will be fully realized until you know why you want to do it.
When should you start planning?
Before the new year starts. Starting before gives you a feeling of energized inspiration to start the new year off right. Not just lying in bed after a crazy night, feeling bad and promising yourself you going to do better this time. That shit does not work. It’s better and more effective to start a few weeks earlier. A few weeks before new years, sit yourself down and think about what it is that you want from this new year.
- Health and fitness?
- Fun and adventure?
- Intellectual Development?
These are some common topics to work through. Get going with a mindmap or a spreadsheet, whatever makes you happy. Get clear on what it is you want to achieve.
Next, break down those larger goals into smaller actions per quarter, month, week and eventually until…
Your Daily habits are directed towards your goals
You are never going to get beach-ready if you don’t make a conscious decision to eat healthy as a lifestyle and move your body a couple of times a week.
You will never be seen as the person for the promotion until you reflect the character traits required for the job or having the skills required to succeed in the position.
You won’t develop deep and meaningful partnerships if you don’t treat your partner like they are worth it each and every day.
Achieving goals are possible. It is simple. But not always easy.
Sounds pretty easy when just plopped out like that. Just plan and you shall achieve. But let me assure and prepare you. It is not.
Achieving things you really want takes a tremendous amount of energy, focus, determination, self-discipline and courage. There is a lot of psychology into it and if you want to chat aside from this please contact me. But for simplicity sake, just know that your goals and dreams can be attained but you have to be committed. Push past haters, negative nancies and downers, but also yourself. You must stand up against your own fear of failure and push on. That will be your toughest battle, to stay above self-sabotage.
That’s why a clear plan is so vital.
When you start to stumble or lose steam, your plan is there. And written in large letters, your motive as to why you want to achieve it.
Your plan, with its major goals and subset goals with a motive tying it together, is the best bet for having the best year of your life. In fact, that plan can be taken as far as your life.
Make this your year, and every year after it.
Stop allowing life to happen to you and just go for it.
No more just floating by letting things come and go. Be an active participant in your life. What do you choose in each and every moment? Set boundaries, let some go. Be there. Think. Choose. Decide.
Because if you don’t, I am pretty certain that you will wake up 50 years from now and think to yourself – “Where did my life go? Why didn’t I do all the things my heart was calling out to do?”
We all bound to fail so fail in something that you want to fail at. And hey, failing at the thing you set out to isn’t even failure, it’s a step to success. Success and failure are two sides of the same goal… You can’t have one without the other.
This is an inspiration piece. Last year I had the life-changing experience of doing a course that teaches you how to develop your life vision. It was an absolute game-changer. I will never head into another year of my life without knowing what it is I want from that year – where I want to be at the end of another 365-day cycle.
If you want to do the same, get in touch. I am happy to share any tips or work through any struggles towards your own success.