by Bradley Davidson, MS - Your Life Purpose Coach
Each year, after the holidays have passed and the New Year has begun, many of us remember the New Year’s Resolutions we created just a few weeks before and feel disappointment and frustration because we have already broken them. Many of those resolutions were great goals, such as losing weight, exercising, organizing your home, or returning to school. But despite the best of intentions, we often let a lack of focus on what we really want prevent us from making true shifts in our lives. We make resolutions instead of creating positive revolutions in our lives.
This year, will you create another resolution or are you prepared for a New Year’s Revolution in your life? Those who simply set goals are goal-setters. However, those who create a meaningful vision and work to realize the vision are the people who revolutionize their lives. How do you make the shift from being a goal “setter” to creating a positive revolution for yourself? Here are five steps to help you make that shift.
Create a vision that reflects what you really want and are created to do in life. A vision is simply what you see and dream of yourself doing or being in the future. Many of us create a lot of goals that are a result of “shoulds” in our life (for example, “I should get organized, should start saving money, etc.”). Instead, carefully consider what you really want and are created to do in life; what is your life’s dream and life’s true purpose? Casting a vision that is aligned with what you are created to do and what you really want will help you keep the momentum long after the New Year’s ball has dropped.
How do you identify a vision that truly reflects what you want and were created to do? Start by making a list of your true values (what do you hold most important in life), your talents and skills, your deepest needs, and what makes you spiritually fulfilled. Then, spend some time en-vision-ing what you would be doing if you were living your values, utilizing your skills, living a spiritually fulfilled life, and getting your needs met.
Reflect on what has brought you success in the past. As you think about the “how” of achieving your vision, think back to what you are most proud of in your life. What has been your life’s greatest moment? How did that moment make you feel? What made that moment great? What did you do that caused you to be able to achieve that great moment? Now, identify how you can apply what you did to achieve that past success to help you achieve the vision you just created. Applying our greatest skills, competencies, and assets to our vision helps ensure success.
Build a plan. Identify what is standing between where you are now and where you want to be (your vision). Using the reflections about what brought you success in the past, build a step-by-step plan to help you close that gap between where you are and where you want to be to live your vision. Set specific action goals with target dates. Make sure these goals are SMART: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and has a Time-table.
Create accountability for yourself. Identify ways to hold yourself accountable for executing your plan and reaching your goals. Create “ticklers” in your calendar system, enlist a close friend or family member to remind and encourage you, and create rewards for yourself when you reach milestone steps or goals. If you stumble, don’t beat yourself up. Instead ask, “what did I learn from that setback?” and move forward.
Celebrate your achievements. Share your vision with friends and family. Have fun on your journey. Celebrate the achievements.
Ready for the greatest year of your life? Dream big, create a plan, and execute. Have a happy and prosperous 2009!