I’m often asked if I set goals and in January I’m inundated with questions about new year resolutions.
Should I set them? Shouldn’t I?
What should they look like? How should I word them? Do I need to create micro actions? Do I have to get up early? Do I have to rewrite my life?
I think that part of this can be impacted on by the fact that whereas years ago in the workplace we’d have 5 minutes chat on the way to the coffee machine now we know what people are thinking, planning and coveting 24/7 thanks to our interconnected world. Thus we can’t help but compare and contrast ourselves to others.
Great in some ways, a killer to happiness and success in others.
So with January rattling on, what do I tell people about New Years Resolutions?
It’s down to the individual. And while some can make it work, for the majority it sets up 2018 with shortcut to failure. While some have the character that means they create the passion and will achieve it no matter what, and others can create a positive addiction to a result. Many have doubts and fears about capabilities, results and even confidence can take a death defying jump off a cliff. So personally I would never set a goal according to a date. It’s ludicrous.
However, I do perform certain actions towards the end of the year. You see weirdly for me and my partner we have never seen the year as January to December (there are currently over 40 calendars in the world. With our knack for altering our year and our months going back through civilisations – any chance to make it easier to achieve right?) For me and my Hubby we have always seen the start of the new year as September, when we return from our holidays. Refreshed. Relaxed. Brain recharged. Body ready for anything. And lots of ideas and plans naturally make their way to the forefront of our minds. In this way, we find we “naturally” get stuff done in the Autumn and into the new year, without a lot of big pressure or preplanning. All that was naturally done over a glass of local wine in the South of France on a beach!
So the end of the calendar year is a great chance to reassess things;
What is working?
What do I need to change to get the results we/I want/need?
How are my actions impacting on our long-term goals?
What needs to change?
These are just some of the questions we answer to check against our desired goals in business and life. January then is my first marker to how I’m getting on. And I ask additional questions such as;
Do I feel the same level of passion for what I do?
Do I need to change what I do or how I do it?
Are my goals still stretching me?
Are comfort zones developing?
What fears are lurking that could impact on my growth?
Do I need to set new or additional actions?
Do I need to set new or additional goals?
This process often throws up little actions that can tune up the goal engine that gets me to where I want to go. It stops me from stagnating, it ensures I challenge myself and always look the right distance into the future. And for me rather importantly it ensures I stay positive. Being self-employed is epic, however, working in an office with a dog at your feet and only seeing clients via a computer screen may make lots of clients happy and successful and the bank account healthy, yet it does little for a healthy mind, so one of my personal goals that I’m happy to share with you is that I will be networking more in 2018. Not only is it great fun, delivers new opportunities and clients, for me personally most importantly it protects my mental well being.
You see a big reason we fail in our goals and new year resolutions is we just don’t work with what we’ve got. We look around at everyone else and think “I should be in the gym” “I should crave world domination” “I should want to be on TV”, etc, etc, etc and this means we stop listening to the values and passions that mattter to us and if you really want success and to achieve in 2018, start by asking these questions. Honestly and openly, what do you really want?
Now let’s get on with achieving it. Exciting isn’t it!