I hope you had a wonderful Christmas and with the New Year just beginning, I thought this would be a good time to share with you 5 steps to prepare yourself for the next twelve months.
No doubt, you’ve decided on your resolution(s) for the next year and you’re pumped and excited to start achieving.
I don’t mean to rain on your parade, but did you know that according to, this 2017 report from the Statistic Brain Research Institute, from the thousands of people that set a resolution every year, only about 9% achieve them.
Much of the time, this is due to setting an unrealistic goal in the first place, but more often, it’s because the technique used isn’t appropriate.
I’ve used the same steps every year and they’ve never let me down. I’m sure they’ll do the same for you…
1. Begin by Reflecting
Start by looking a the last twelve months before you concentrate on the next twelve..
Over the last year, I’m sure you had many successes and most likely plenty of failures too. So, grab some paper and a pen, then spend some time identifying your progress so far. Start by asking yourself some reflection questions such as,
- What did I do last year that contributed to my successes?
- What did I do last year that contributed to my failures?
- If the same circumstances occurred this year, what would I do differently?
- Is there anyone in my life I need to be more attentive toward?
- Is there anyone in my life who hindered my progress?
- What can I improve next year, to increase my chances of success?
- What was my biggest achievement this year?
- What were the most important learnings from my failures this year?
By getting clarity on your previous year, you’ll be in a much stronger position to succeed in the next one.
2. Set Large Goals, but Celebrate the Small Wins.
In my book Simple Steps to Supreme Self Confidence, I make the point that what a person can do is incredible, but it’s what a person will do that makes the difference.
It’s great that you set lofty goals that seem to be difficult to achieve, you need to stretch the boundaries of what you can do, if you want to grow as a person. But the problem with big goals, is you can become despondent very quickly, because there’s a lack of celebration until the goal is reached (if you get that far). By using a SMARTER technique, you’ll set yourself up to receive many small celebrations along the way.
Definitely set some big goals for the year, but make sure you break it down into smaller goals that you can achieve weekly, or monthly, with a series of small, simple tasks you can get excited about.
3. Recognise There’ll be Problems Along the Way.
Nothing ever goes exactly to plan. There’s bound to be problems along the way.
Try to prepare for these ‘bumps in the road’, by planning as best you can. Many times, if you think about it, you can anticipate issues with certain tasks, necessary actions. or even the people you’ll have to deal with. By thinking about them now, you can offset the level of pain they create by working out how you’ll deal with them beforehand.
4. There Will be Failures, but Learn from Them.
You can only really fail, if you stop trying. There will be times when deadlines get missed, or the results of a task don’t go the way you expected, or in the moment you decide that a big slice of cake won’t harm your diet. Own the failure, learn something from it, then move on with your new knowledge.
5. Plan Lots of Rewards.
Make sure to celebrate your progress along the way, especially in the early days of your journey. The rewards you choose needn’t be big, or expensive, but even the smallest things can make a huge difference to your drive and determination to succeed.
Maybe every time you have a successful week, you could treat yourself to a magazine, or go to the cinema after a successful month, etc. Choose something that works for you.