Can you believe it is 2023 already! 2022 flew by so fast. Was it just me, or did the year feel like it was one fast roller coaster ride? I was absolutely exhausted by the end of the year.
Fortunately, I was very blessed and had a wonderful break over the festive season. Now it’s back to the grindstone.
January is a month where many of us intend to “start anew”. We set goals and resolutions, and our enthusiasm and intentions are very high. But now that we’re at the end of January, reality starts to kick in. The kids have gone back to school, we are back at work and the roller coaster has started revving up again.
Very soon those resolutions, dreams and goals are distant thoughts as we are dragged around by the chaos of society that we now live in.
I know many people who don’t even bother with New Year’s resolutions anymore. I am sure that what I have described above is the very reason why. Part of me understands why. Even so, I feel sad because what it means is that they have given up on crafting dreams and goals for themselves.
GOOD NEWS ALERT!! Resolutions don’t need to be linked to New Year
The good news is that you don’t need “New Year” to decide to make a change in your life. The bad news is that most people just give up. They say “it is what it is” or they take the path of least resistance. The odds are stacked against us.
Do you often feel that things are totally out of your control? Do you feel you have no choice about how your life is panning out? I know I do at times.
There’s light at the end of the tunnel!!
Fortunately, you can achieve your goals and realise your resolutions. You can do this by taking charge of the situation and working systematically towards reaching your goals. Most times, working towards a new goal means that you are creating change in your life. This means you will need to forge new habits. Tenacity and determination are keys to unlocking your goals.
As Robin Sharma says “All change is hard at first, messy in the middle and glorious at the end”. This is the number one reason why New Year’s resolutions don’t stick.
Change is HARD WORK
Most people don’t like change – it’s too hard. I know I get drawn in by the comfort of what is familiar and predictable. I’m sure you will agree with me when I say it is extremely scary to step out of your comfort zone. You are not alone! Very few people are wired to do this naturally. For most of us, it is hard, hard work that requires a huge amount of dedication and effort. Even then, the odds seem to be stacked up against us.
So you ask yourself this question: ‘What will make this process of change easier so that I can accomplish my dreams?’
Here are 5 tips I’ve put together to help you achieve your goals for 2023!
TIP 1: THE CHANGE NEEDS TO BE EASIER THAN YOUR CURRENT SITUATION
As Tony Robbins says “Change happens when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change.” What this means is that real change happens when it is easier to make the change than to keep things as they are. An example would be that you finish high school and start studying at university. This is a huge change! Would you prefer to stay in high school rather? No way! That would be embarrassing, and all your friends have started at university too!. Can you see how, ,n this situation, it is easier to make the change than to stay the same? Ask yourself the question for each of your goals – what would make the pain to stay the same higher than the pain to change? Then work on that.
TIP 2: CREATE BITE-SIZE CHUNKS OF ACHIEVABLE MILESTONES
Desmond Tutu once wisely said that “there is only one way to eat an elephant: a bite at a time.” So maybe you have figured out why it will be better to make the change than to stay the same, but it still seems like a completely overwhelming task. What you need to do now is to break it down into bite-size chunks and put deadlines against each “chunk”. You will then have a step-by-step achievable plan over a realistic time frame.
TIP 3: MAKE IT TANGIBLE
“A goal is tangible when you can experience it with one of the senses, that is, taste, touch, smell, sight or hearing” – Anil Thomas. So you have broken down the goal into “baby steps”. How do you make it feel like more than “just a chore”? The answer is: make it tangible! Use your imagination!
Einstein famously said: “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.”
I do this by:
- visualising the goal. I close my eyes and imagine what it will be like to have achieved this goal. I live in the fantasy.
- creating a vision board. I love to do something creative. Life consists of too many analytical situations and expectations. This is your opportunity to create an artwork of images and words that represent what the goal means to you. You can draw or paint, cut out pictures from magazines or design it on Canva. It doesn’t matter how you create it as long as it is yours and you can put it up on a wall where you can see it every day.
- write a story of how your life is now that you have accomplished this goal. Feel it, smell it, taste it, see it. Writing a story will make it come to life.
Studies have been done where they have proven how effective visualisation is. They asked a piano player to play the piano and measured their brainwaves. Then they asked the same piano player to imagine that they are playing the piano – the same brainwaves lit up. The brain didn’t know the difference between really playing the piano and imagining it.
The same is true when it comes to your goals. Imagine what your life would be like if you accomplished that goal, play it over and over in your mind, draw it, write about it, so that you will believe that you will get there. Your brain will already think you have it and will figure out the steps required to achieve it.
TIP 4: MAKE IT SMART
We have all heard of SMART goals, and if you haven’t, here is a quick crash course. SMART stands for:
S = SPECIFIC (instead of saying “I need to lose weight”, say “I need to lose 12 kgs and fit into a size 34 by the end of November this year”).
M = MEASURABLE (You need to be able to see whether you have made progress or not. When you get on the scale, you can see how many kilograms you have lost and you can see whether your clothes are looser fitting).
A = ACHIEVABLE. As much as you would like to lose 20kg, you will know that it is not going to be possible by the end of November this year, but 12 kgs will be achievable. Setting unachievable goals is disheartening and you will give up, which in turn makes you feel like a loser.
R = RELEVANT. If you are your ideal weight, setting a goal to lose weight is pointless. Do something that is relevant for you and will make a difference. For example, you want to look better and feel better. You are your ideal weight, so rather focus on toning and your fitness levels.
T = TIME-BOUND. Yes, this is the most important. Set yourself a deadline. I need to lose 12 kgs by end November this year. There you have a time frame, it is not open ended and creates a bit of pressure. After all, most of us work better under pressure.
TIP 5: GET SOME SUPPORT!
Last but not least, establish a support system. It is really really difficult to make a lasting change. It is even more difficult without some support. Find a weight loss buddy who can make the meals with you, exercise with you, and support you along your weight loss journey. Find someone to hold you accountable and constantly remind you why this is important. A coach will do this for you.
If you are serious about achieving your goals and want to buck the trend by turning your New Year’s resolutions into something tangible, let’s talk. My signature programme is called “Chaos to Clarity” and I will be launching it at the beginning of March. In the meantime, let me help you find clarity on how to achieve your New Year’s resolutions and make them stick. Contact me for a no-obligation on boarding call.
#2023 #NewYearsResolutions #SMARTGoals #GoalAchievement #Chaos2Clarity #PictureYourPurpose