The New Year comes with great promise for a better start. People make resolutions that are soon overrun by the daily hustle, and before long, life goes back to its mundane routine. If this narration sounds familiar, then I have great news for you. You can change your life in 2020 and live the life you have always desired. Just like you did not wake up and find yourself where you are today, you cannot expect to get out in a day. Change and especially lasting change demands that you put in effort and time. The more time you put into something, the more it becomes a habit to you. This journey, therefore, will require sacrifice, consistency, and focus.
The points below will help you change your life forever.
1. To Change Your Life, Own It
The truth about life is that there are things that you have no control over. You don’t choose your family, the weather, and so on. When your life feels like that, it can be frustrating and lead you to blame other things or people.
You forget that in all these happenings, you are the common denominator. If changing one of these elements will change the result, doesn’t it go without saying that changing the common denominator is far easier than dealing with all the other individual details?
The first step, then, for you to change your life this year is to accept that you are the common denominator in all your circumstances. Realize that regardless of what situation you are in, your reaction is totally dependent on you. If you want a different result, then you have to choose to respond differently. The key is to refrain from impulse. Remember, the only person you can ever change is yourself. Therefore, find your role in the situations of life and change your response to them
2. Take Stock of Your Life
To go anywhere, you have to know where you are. Take a pen and pad and write down exactly where you currently are. Note your account balance, education, skills, experience, friends, assets, debts, opportunities, and so on.
Go through the list, and ponder.
- Are you happy with your current state?
- Why are you not content with it?
- How does your ideal state look?
- What can you do to transform the current state to the desired state?
Take note to only focus on your current skills, resources, and opportunities.
3. Set Short-Term Goals
You heard me right, short term goals. They are easier to focus on and achieve as compared to long term goals. These short term goals can be simple things like reading a chapter of a book in a month, reducing your debt by $5, or complimenting yourself every day. It could be more complex, like finishing a diploma in 3 months. The trick is keeping it as simple as possible. Break down the complex goal into other simpler goals, with shorter timelines. Achieving these goals and acknowledging them will give you a rush of confidence and a sense of accomplishment.
The secret to a successful life is winning the small goals over time and consistently. These small goals add up to a more significant achievement that you would not have won, had you tackled it in one bit.
4. Get Yourself an Accountability Partner
When you are creating new habits, the old ones will always try to creep back in.
A reliable accountability partner should always check on you and your progress in reaching your goals. They should push you when you stall, empathize when you fail, and celebrate you when you win. This person should be excellent in the path you are following, so they can guide you well. You must be able to trust and be honest with them. They, on the other part, should be able to call you out when you are falling back, but with love, and celebrate your wins as if they were their own.
5. Learn To Say No and Say It Often
This simple word is hard to say, but, potent in changing your life for better. Saying No to others is much easier than saying it to oneself. To make a lasting change in your life, you have to get comfortable with saying no to others and yourself. Say No to procrastination, No to wasting time on social media, No to eating that unhealthy snack, and so on. Saying No will free up so much time for you that you can use to work on your goals and other important things. People will learn to respect you and your resources the more you tell them No. If you can discipline yourself enough to respect your No, then you will achieve anything you set your mind on.
The biggest obstacle to success is time. You spend too much time doing things you don’t want, so as not to offend others. To change your life, you have to own your life and your resources and guard them fiercely. Say No to pleasing others and to self-gratification.
Use your time to act on the goals you have set. You will falter and will even fall sometimes. Rise, dust yourself, and keep moving. Have someone to hold your hand when you are weak and celebrate with you when you win.
Whatever you do, keep moving.