It is the beginning of a new year. A new page. This year will be different. This year you will finally ...(get a new job, get out of debt, lose weight... you fill in the blanks). 365 days of promise and potential laid out before you like a shiny, clean, freshly Zambonied skating rink. So how's it going?
I know we fully intend to follow through on what we say we want for our lives, but sadly, only 12% of us will keep on with our goals, resolutions and New Year's commitments past January. In fact, many of us will have abandoned our plans already. So why do we give up? Why don't we keep working toward what we SAY we really want? I asked a few of my friends why they abandon their dreams, or don't ultimately put 100% effort into achieving what they say is important to them each year and their top 5 answers were:
1/ Other stuff (life) gets in the way
2/ I don't have the time
3/ Fear of change/or the unknown
4/ I'm not 100% sure what I want
5/ It seems too big/I don't know how to get started
Do any of those sound familiar to you?
Yup! Me too. Are you willing to make the choice to make 2013 different? Do you have the guts to ditch the excuses and follow through this year? Here are some strategies to help.
10 STEPS TO HELP YOU MAKE GOOD ON YOUR GOOD INTENTIONS IN 2013
1/ CREATE YOUR 10-YEAR HAIRY VISION
It is important to have a big- picture compelling vision for your life to keep you inspired. We did this work last month. Did you miss it? Click here to download the article and worksheets and create your BIG HAIRY 10 Year Vision (H.A.I.R.Y = Heartfelt, Aligned, Irresistible, Rockin' and Yours). Keep your Big HAIRY Vision in mind and present for yourself as you create your smaller, measurable, incremental goals.
2/ CLEAR A PATH
You have to make space for what you want in 2013 , for a new paradigm or new way of being. If there is a bunch of junk in the way (be it physical clutter, mental, emotional or spiritual ), you aren't going to have space for what you really want. Let go of everything that you do not wish to carry with you in this New Year. Some create a ritual of writing down and then burning what they want to let go of. Some of you may need to do a physical clearing of clutter, or other potential things in your way (eg/ getting rid of the bag of cookies in your cupboard). And like anyone living in a snowy climate knows, you must keep the driveway shovelled regularly. Keep your path clear.
3/ ZOOM IN AND GET CLEAR
Take an objective and laser-like magnified look at where you are RIGHT NOW. Click here to download my simple JOY METER exercise and identify where you are (without judgement) in all areas of your life.
Ask yourself, what one thing, if shifted, would increase your joy meter in each area?
Then get clear - Which area(s) are most important to tackle first this year?
4/ DREAM BIG BUT PLAN REALISTICALLY
Motivational pioneer, Tony Robbins, was reported as saying that most people overestimate what they can achieve in a year, and massively underestimate what they can achieve in a decade. So keep your big HAIRY vision in mind and then set specific, measurable goals for the ways in which you will shift your Joy Meter this year. Make sure your planning is realistic. Remember the power of incremental improvement. Each step forward is a step forward! Plan wisely!
5/ BUST THE ROADBLOCKS
It is important to get real and identify the current or possible roadblocks to achieving what you want. Take the energy out of the roadblocks by "calling them out". Ask yourself what is in the way RIGHT NOW of you beginning to shift your joy meter and moving into your Big HAIRY vision. Make a big 'ol list of what's in the way for you. Keep writing until you run out of obstacles. (Eg/ I am not feeling well/ I have a backlog of work/ My kids are sick/ My house is a mess/My in-laws are coming to visit)
Then ask yourself: "What are the possible things may pop up for me and get in the way of my moving ahead after I have started?" Yup - think ahead to all of the possible roadblocks you may encounter this year as you move forward toward your goals. The things that will conspire to take you off track. (Hint: Think of what in the past has ultimately caused you to abandon a dream or goal. eg/ Work pressures/Fatigue/Laziness/Money pressures)
6/ MAKE A ONCE-A-DAY COMMITMENT
Remember the formula: Talk-Action = Zero. If you do not take action, nothing will happen. Commit to at least one action per day to move you forward in the area you want to shift. Commit to imperfect action once a day vs. perfect inaction.
7/ PUT YOUR MONEY WHERE YOUR MOUTH IS
Sign up and pay the money for that course, that program or that professional membership. Signing up and paying is not necessarily a guarantee that you will follow through but laying down bucks will generally start you on a road to commitment. Sign up, pay up and then up the ante by adding Step # 8.
8/ GO PUBLIC
Are you gutsy enough to really commit? Tell lots of people what your plans and dreams are. Tell them what you are working towards this year. Tell them what you are committed to. Tell your family, your friends, your co-workers, your dog, your local barista, and your hair stylist. Not only will going public provide a feeling of accountability, it will also get you excited, enthused, and even more committed to your dream. Take your planning past the point of no return.
9/ BE CREATIVE
There is no rule that says you have to start Jan. 1st. There is no rule that says you have to do anything in a certain way. The point is to take action toward your dream and have the courage to keep on keepin' on (even when, and especially when, you don't want to). Be courageous! Jump!
10/ ASK FOR SUPPORT
Decide what kind of support you need to keep you on track. Do you need someone reminding you of your HAIRY Vision on a daily basis? Do you need someone checking in and woo hoo'ing at each incremental success-point? Do you need someone to simply encourage you to keep going? Decide what you need, and then ASK for that support.