There is always something fresh and new about the new year! Feelings of hope; having expectations that things are possible… like this is time for renewal.
It is a time we all like to assess our lives, personal and professional. What do we want to add, enhance, eliminate or change? We set goals and our ‘new year’s resolutions.’ What works best for you? To identify long term, strategic objectives along with a detailed plan? Or to have short term, specific goals?
I have found that the best first question is: How do you want your life to be? How do you want your work to fit into your life? What is it that you would like to be different? And how can you incorporate these changes into your daily life?
From changing eating habits and exercise, to the household project, to getting organized, to a new class or making a career change, I have found that when you think about these activities as something to do, it is more difficult to stick with them. Distractions, along with the realities of life, can interfere and the great idea to fall by the wayside. We have all experienced that!
Realistically, Charlene knew she would not go to the gym 3 days a week. She knew that if she made that her goal, it would not happen and she would feel bad. So, instead she found a trainer to work with her 1 day a week, along with exercises she could do at home. Her plan was get some guidance, accountability and a program that felt doable. Her goal, was to establish this small step as a regular part of her daily life and then add a 2nd day and maybe a third.
Matt wanted to write. He had many ideas and loved to talk about them. He loved thinking about writing them down. He was just too busy. Or so he thought. It takes a lot of initial effort to change old bad habits and incorporate realistic changes that contribute to the life you want. That was true for Matt too. He developed a realistic plan for 1-2 hours a day twice a week. He could put anything he wanted on the blank page, including what he wanted to write. After a month, this became part of his life. He stopped talking about writing and began to fill the blank pages. Writing was now part of his life, and he was closer to having the life he wanted.
We always forget that the journey of 1000 miles begins with a single step. The good news is that after a few steps we can look back and see how far we have come.
New year’s resolutions can be good. Change and a fresh start feel great. Take some time to plan how you can incorporate the changes you want into your life.
Happy New Year! sw 1/15/10