Most of us will enter the new year with fresh hope. We hope things will be better, that we’ll earn more money, get more organized, lose that weight, have more fun.
One manager I worked for used to say, “Hope is not a plan”. Ok, to be honest, I hated that saying. It’s frustrating to be asked for a goal and then when you say, “I hope to accomplish ______ today” to be told that answer won’t do.
“Hope is not a plan”
But he was right, it’s not a plan. Hope is a feeling of expectation or desire. A plan requires a defined outcome and the action steps it takes to get there. That’s where I want to start my new year goal-setting.
It starts in your head — that place where the voices emerge to tell you you’re not good enough, or the obstacles are too great, or whatever lie we might choose to believe. But this year, don’t listen to those voices.
Food For The Right Thoughts
Here are a few simple (or not so simple) steps to getting your head on-board for a terrific new year.
- Review the last year and notice what worked and what didn’t. This is not an exercise in self-abuse, but a simple course correction. Make a few notes, but no beating yourself up.
- Get a picture of where you want to be at the end of 2017. This should include these four areas: Vocation and Income, Lifestyle, Health and Well-being, and Relationships.
- Reverse engineer each goal to determine the necessary action steps that will get you there. What do you need to accomplish each day/week/month to get there? You can find plenty of goal-setting resources online to help you organize that.
- Obtain a “let it go” attitude. You will never move forward if you’re holding onto past pain, clutter, guilt, unforgiveness, or outdated thinking. Out with the old, in with the new.
- Be the best version of yourself. Each of us are created with unique abilities. The world needs what only you have. Your strengths will take you the direction you were meant to go. Identify what they are and go there. Focusing on your weaknesses is like backing up over tire spikes. It’ll stop you in your tracks.
- Commit to being a willing learner. If there are areas you need to grow, do it. But remember, you don’t need “fixed”, you need equipped. When you decide you “know enough” is when you stop growing, and that’s when you stop living.
- Get the hell out of your comfort zone. Nothing good happens in your comfort zone. If you’re afraid, that means you’re probably on the right path. Acknowledge your fear, pat it on the head, and set it down in a comfy chair. Then get on with being brave. That’s the place where growth and success happen.
“Nothing good happens in your comfort zone”
Count It All Success
It’s great to make your lists and have your plans, but it comes to nothing without the action to make it a reality. I’m a big fan of baby steps. Forward motion of any degree is still moving forward. Success breeds success. Celebrating even the smallest accomplishments will fuel you into further success.
Even the occasional “failure” needs to be counted a success. After all, didn’t you learn something from it?
Find the motivational quote that resonates with you and post that on your mirror, make it your screen saver, and put it on your dashboard. Feed your mind the right fuel and 2017 will be a year you can one day look back on and know you did a fine job of it.
“When you decide you ‘know enough’ is when you stop growing, and that’s when you stop living.”
Cindy White is a freelance copywriter specializing in helping businesses reach their target markets for increased sales and improved client relations through compelling, well-crafted copy. Initial consultations are always free of charge.