The best advice I ever got was from my high school english teacher. He told me, “you can’t change things overnight”. So, like many people, I put my head down and got to work. It took me one year (which felt like an eternity) to win my first $200 in a creative writing contest. The valuable lesson is how you set up, not making a list of New Year’s resolutions. Will you dedicate your 2020 to chipping away consistently to achieve the things that are critical to your purpose? Here are some strategies to help start the new year with purpose.
Clarity with Accountability
You can hold yourself accountable to many things, but do they serve your purpose? You want to wake up earlier? Be clear about why – is it to answer emails for an hour, or workout for stress management? Ask yourself what are you doing differently with your time? Brigitte Granger, entrepreneur and founder of Supporti, says “have an accountability partner to check in with regularly to ensure you’re doing what you said you’d do”.
In my practice, it is common for me to tell patients that their overall health takes a team. There are experts for a reason, from business coaches, dentists, accountants and real estate attorneys. Goals are made up of many pieces, and categories can help identify steps you need to make. Carrie Mead, MS and Life Coach, says “you may have goals for your finances, health, relationships, spirituality, career, and recreation to name a few. By segregating goals by the sectors of our life we can fully evaluate our past year and prepare for the new year. In this evaluation process you will want to assess what you did well and where you could use some improvement. It’s imperative that this is written down and that you visit your goals regularly”.
A year in review of what went well is a reminder of what to do more of in the future. Baron Christopher Hanson, works with business owners through his consulting firm and says, “I make a list of all the important people, organizations, churches, teammates, farms, clubs, and other critical crews of people who helped me or our organizations last year. I take the next year to thank them, return the favors, and support all the great people and connections. By proactively giving back or networking or keeping in touch with people and organizations who helped you or served you previous, you are rewarding great people and businesses”.
Time Flies When You Are Having Fun
Are you as shocked as me every December 1st that another year is about to end? Where did the time go? Creating a map for the month of January will create forward growth for the following months. Dr. Julie Gurner says, “Open your computer and take the time to write out the life you truly want for yourself. Have an open mind, don’t judge yourself, and get to task. Be as thorough and detailed as possible covering every aspect of life you can think of. Be specific. The next day, read your document again and map out categories (personal, relationships, business/work) that your ideal life contains. Start to look critically at the life you desire and put small actionable steps in each category that you can take to move closer to your goals. For example, if you want to be in a relationship (and are not), maybe signing up on a dating app is an action you can take. Get all of those actions and put them on your calendar for the month”.
Add and Subtract
Expect to shake things up a bit. Robert Herbst, holds 19 World Champion powerlifting titles and says, “Don’t say you want to lose 20 lbs. That is hard to do and you will get frustrated and quit. Instead, say you want to lose 2 lbs a month. Go to the gym, eat right, study, whatever it takes, even if it means giving something up or spending less time on social media. Make a commitment to yourself and make yourself the person you want to be and accomplish what you want to accomplish”.
Know Your Why
The fact is, you are doing what you are doing for a reason. Sometimes it’s money, other times it’s living out your passion. Ashley Hopkins, RD, and Director of Wellness Program Success at Wellable, says, “To help uncover your unique ‘why’ and embody it daily for the benefit of overall well-being, try reflecting on positive past experiences, identifying personal values and character strengths, and visualizing what it is in life that brings you joy. A strong sense of purpose serves as a natural roadmap to help you navigate a meaningful, fulfilling life by shaping personal goals and guiding important life decisions”.
Welcome to your 2020 setup, no resolutions needed. For more health and wellness insights, follow me @drrubinatahir