Another year is nearly complete. The massive swirling ball of rock and water that is our planet has completed yet another long journey around the sun. A year among billions. Death and rebirth, the cycle continues. Considering how laughable our lives are in the grand scheme of the cosmos, it’s rather amazing the vast number of things that can happen in a person’s life during the course of a full calendar year. Some serendipitous, some meticulously planned and executed. Did you accomplish some of your goals from this year? Did you even have goals for this year?!
Reflect on 2016…. are you further ahead than you were 365 days ago? Financially, in your career & relationships, your physical health, your spiritual well being and overall happiness? Have you turned the dial of success up a notch? What amazing experiences did you live through? What are you grateful for? What lessons did you learn?
Now is also a time to look forward, to begin manifesting the life you want in 2017. What areas of your life need a little improvement? What would benefit by a little time and attention, paid every day? I think goal setting is a vital part of a person’s success – a way to bring dreams into reality. The trap is calling it a ‘new year’s resolution’ because then you’re already allowing yourself the ability to quit in 2 weeks time along with everyone else, because that is the expectation for those crowdfunded goals – the bar is set low.
Define your goals before 2017. Start the new with year the momentum of a several day streak in your spanish lessons or yoga classes. The break in the calendar is arbitrary and you can have a headstart over 99% of the population.
There is a great quote by Matthew Kelly where he says “Most people overestimate what they can do in a day, and underestimate what they can do in a month.” This is important, because you won’t crush out your wildest ambitions in the next 2 weeks. It takes long chunks of dedication to build something of value. Daily habits of excellence stacked days and weeks on top of each other, compounding. While others are losing steam 2 weeks into their resolutions, you’ll know you’re only halfway to your month’s end goals. Only halfway to goal 1 of 12. Others are quitting, you’re 1/24th of the way to success.
Use those quoted time frames to your advantage – a little bit each day doesn’t seem like much, but a little bit 30 times in a row starts to add up. Where do you want to be in a year? Now break that down into what has to happen each month to reach that desired level. Plan your goal for month 1, put your head down and grind for 30 days. You have the mental stamina to do anything for 30 days. Commit to every single day. Then, pull your head up after the month and re-asses; did you make measurable progress towards your goal? Has your goal shifted at all? What other strategies could you be using that may be more effective. Then lay down a new month goal. Commit to another 30 days of head down, brow-beating grindage. Then again. Repeat that process for 12 months. A mixture of long and short term goal thinking, broken down into manageable and realistic bits.
This time next year, late December 2017, look back on the year. If you can honestly say to yourself that you made daily steps towards monthly goals, then I guarantee you’ll be in a better place than you are right now as you read this. Make 2017 your year.
Notes from this post:
To see a great visual breakdown of your life into smaller chunks that are easier to wrap your mind around, go here.
To learn more about setting achievable goals, go here.