The feeling that time is going by, you are busy all of the time and yet at the end of the day, week, month, and year it doesn’t seem like you were able to accomplish what you really wanted to do. What is that? Why does that happen? We can start off the year motivated, yet statistically, most people do not keep their new year resolutions, goals, or intentions.
The frustration that can be caused if we don’t accomplish what we want to do; or if we give up on our goals; at some point, most of us have been there. It is so easy to get and stay busy with the day to day tasks that we need to do that we either run out of time, steam, motivation or discipline to focus on how we would really like to spend our time.
A couple of years ago, a friend was diagnosed with cancer and was preparing for surgery. Being by her bedside as the nurses prepped her, seeing the worried look on my face and at some depth without talking about it may be feeling that she may no longer have time in front of her she handed me her Kindle and said while I am gone read this, answer all of the questions, and I will be back to check. When the book started off as follows, it was easy to see that she was trying to share something important.
“If we look into our lives, we will see clearly how many unimportant tasks, so-called ‘responsibilities’ accumulate to fill them up. We tell ourselves we want to spend time on the important things of life, but there never is any time. There are things which have to be done, and we feel we have no choice about it. And by the time we are finished doing everything that has to be done, we’re too tired to think of doing anything else. Gradually we become cynical about things like New Year’s resolutions and Lifetime Goals. Why bother? The thought that we could actually do something about our deepest frustrations just doesn’t occur to us anymore. We give up on creating a life that is more meaningful and fulfilling and settle for what we have. We give up on ourselves and our ability to make things happen. Yet part of us is unwilling to settle – the part that wakes up in the middle of the night worrying but also contemplating the things that matter most to us: What am I doing here? What have I really accomplished? Why can’t I make better use of my time? What can I do to take better care of my family? When is it going to be my turn? Surely there must be more to life than all these worries and frustrations? What’s the point?”
Your Best Year Yet
Never really having set new year resolutions, but knowing which specific areas that would benefit from focused attention is a good beginning. There are numerous books available to explore the topic of setting and accomplishing goals. Each has their strong points; however, the one that has made the most impact is the one my friend handed to me on her Kindle,
Something that is different about this book is that it is more of a guide that you can work through with the outcome similar to or better than attending an interactive workshop. Better said, it is an interactive workshop in a book. The author, Jinny Ditzler originated this process in the UK in 1981 and has trained over 400 Program Leaders and Coaches, who have worked with over 1,000 companies in 14 countries. Over a million people have used Best Year Yet in the past 35 years. For the past 4 years, Jinny Ditzler has also been a regular contributor to the Huffington Post.
In her blog, How to Achieve Your New Year’s Resolutions . . . and so much more, Jinny Ditzler says that “Taking these steps will guide you not only to achieve your resolutions but also experience learning as a person.”
1. Appreciate your successes.
We tend to be critical, finding it easier to dwell on what we didn’t do rather than what we did. By recalling your achievements, you build authentic confidence. To find your successes, ask yourself this question and capture your responses: What did I accomplish?
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2. Learn your lessons.
Consider your accomplishments. What advice would you give yourself to do better? I also find that listing my disappointments is also illuminating and an emotional release. Pretend the failures belong to someone else ~ what advice would you have for him or her? Once you’ve captured your lessons, choose three that would help to achieve your resolutions. Finally, shorten each to a memorable piece of advice. For example, for the author, one of hers for last year was just one word: Simplify. Everywhere she turned from their money to give away things she no longer needed ~ her life felt transformed.
3. Shift your limiting beliefs and assumptions.
Unless we realize the self-limiting negative beliefs we have, we live in a small box that limits what’s possible. Too old? Too stupid? Not good enough to achieve what you want? Ask yourself, What do I say to myself to explain my failures? Trust your wisdom and write down whatever occurs to you. Last year Jinny’s limiting belief was If I don’t finish my book, I’m not doing what I should to help others. Her New Paradigm was This is the perfect moment for me to make a difference. Letting go of the guilt about her book freed her up for a framework of helpfulness to many more people.
4. Live your values.
Given the events of last year, we saw people who weren’t living their values. What pain they caused! But a better use of our energy is to examine how we’re doing. Ask yourself, What are my personal values? Make a list and score each value on a scale of 1 to 10 on how you’re living each value. Awareness brings its own reward ~ and then you can set your goals in a way that doesn’t conflict with your values.
5. Set and focus on your top ten goals or resolutions.
Having taken these steps, you have a fertile environment in which to create the ten goals that matter most to you. For each role, you play in your life, write a goal that leads to a year that would matter. Last year Jinny didn’t finish writing her new book, but she took their first-ever driving holiday. She says that she has only met one person who achieved all ten of their annual goals, but whatever you accomplish, you’re way ahead of the days when you let your New Year’s Resolutions diminish and disappear.
The five steps listed above will get you started, and there are ten questions overall in the book that will also help to put a one-page plan for your life or your business in place. There are also steps on how to stay engaged with the plan to accomplish the desired results.
If you need a little inspiration check out the video below