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"There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed."
Earnest Hemingway.


Starting with the end in Mind

Happy New Year!

I love the beginning of a new year.  There is a sense of being able to wipe the slate clean and start again.  There is a tangible sense of hope in the air for some and a sense of dread for others.  For me, I have the Positivity talent in StrengthFinders, so I am the person with unlimited amounts of hope as I peer into the foggy future.

For me a new year is like a giant present, waiting to be unwrapped one day at a time.  The 2nd habit of highly effective people according to Steve Covey is Begin with the end in mind.  This sparks another of my StrengthFinder talents, which is Futuristic, so my radar is up and I am scanning for road signs and clues to make sense of what the end of 2018 should look like.  For me once I have the outcome clear, I feel like a heat seeking missile of purpose.

Part of my process for each new year is going through the 10 questions of the Create your Best Year Yet workshop.  I love this process because it is not just about setting goals for each year.  It is about taking a good look at what worked and what didn’t work well last year, then taking the time to see the lessons that were learned through 2017.  Once you have that knowledge, it is about taking a step back and honestly looking at where you limit yourself and coming up with a workable strategy to stop doing that.  

By the time you get to setting your goals you have done the work required to ensure you are creating goals that aligned to your values and the roles that you intend to play in the new year.  You basically set yourself up for success.   It is a great way to start the new year, having cleared all the weeds and stones from last year, checking to make sure you aren’t continuing with roles that are no longer valid for this season of life.  This process is like a giant clearing and weeding process for me.  It ensures that I don’t take any unnecessary weight with me into a new year.

I believe in the process so much I have been doing it for years, once or twice I have got lazy and convinced myself that because I know the process so well I don’t need to do the work and have just made a mental note of what I want to achieve, but it only takes a month or two of realising that I am drifting before I get my A into G and sit down, do the work and get someone to hold me accountable.  

One of my strategies to ensure I do this properly every year was to run workshops for people, because part of my preparation is to do the work and then as I give examples I am getting people to hold me accountable.  Here are three things you can do to ensure 2018 becomes your best year yet.

  • Set a chuck of time aside

Unless you make the time, it won’t happen.  Life is busy, before you know it, it will be midyear and you will wonder how that happened and why you haven’t achieve anything you were hoping to achieve.  What do you want to achieve by the end of 2018?  Let’s start with the end in mind, how do you know that you have your best year yet?  What do you want to do, have or be by the end of this year?  Book the time, turn off your phone, go somewhere that makes you feel relaxed or creative and open up your notebook.  Why not join us for one of the Create Your Best Year Workshops, so you can do the whole process?

  • Write it down

Now you might think that just thinking about what you want to achieve is enough, but the science is in, writing it down has a much higher chance of ensuring any of those things will happen.  The process of thinking on paper is incredible powerful.  It doesn’t have to be neat and tidy, in fact, the more untidy and scribbly it is the better.  Another thing, just write, don’t edit or judge what you are writing in the beginning, just let your pen flow.  Don’t commit to more than 10 goals you will focus on.

  • Make yourself accountable

Once you have done the work and have come up with your Top Ten goals, write it down neatly and stick it up where you will see it everyday.  Then the most important part, tell a friend, even better hire a coach (yip, it’s a plug to hire me, best decision you will make all year I promise) to help you achieve these goals and to hold you accountable.

What is your process for preparing for the year?


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