This is part II – numbers 6 through 10 – of the New Year’s guide to restoring your productive energies in preparation to crush it this year without resolutions. For 1 through 5, please see last week’s post.
Let’s get it.
Break down the goal. We create goals to achieve things that we think will make us FEEL better. That may be a very basic way of looking at it, but it’s usually true. Right now, you are not where you want to be and, overall, don’t feel you’re living the life you should be living.
Focus on WHO you want to be and how you want to FEEL this year – not the big pile of things that need to be done to get there… or even the small pile.
If you focus on the pile, you’ll get overwhelmed. Instead, see yourself as whole and fulfilled. Imagine doing the things that bring joy to your heart daily and that life is pretty freakin’ great.
It’s important to not fool yourself into thinking the more you can accomplish this year, the better you’ll feel. If you aren’t being true to who you are or feeding your spirit, you’ll drain yourself just for the sake of having done stuff.
The sheer number of tasks you accomplish isn’t important, and if you’re living from the heart, that number will likely be very small. That’s because living from the heart and really being true to who you want to be requires focus and a keen sense of self that won’t come overnight.
Channel your energies into achieving that good feeling and being the person you currently almost envy, then work backwards crushing the steps to get there.
Set aside time to tackle it piece by piece. For the skeptical folk who are all like, “Yeah, okay. It’s easy to say crush the steps, but how the hell do I do that?” – I gotcha covered.
First, get a pen and pad. Seriously. Don’t just let this float around in your head because if you do, that’s where it’ll stay – in your head as some pretty little fantasy. We want you out there kicking butt in real life. Like so many others, I believe what you write comes to life. So even if you need to tear a sheet of paper out of your kid’s homework journal… I mean sometimes a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do.
Write down your mission statement. Your mission statement will say quite clearly what it is you want to achieve in the most descriptive, yet concise way possible. Try to keep it relatively short – no more than 2-3 sentences. You’ll get to flush it out later. If you’re including a particular title in the mission statement, you should attach it to one or two descriptive words that’ll shed light on why you want to become that title.
For example, why do you want to be a writer? How do you think being a writer would make you feel? What would it do for you, your family, etc? What type of writing are you drawn toward and why?
Be as lavish and over-the-top with your statement as possible. Don’t water it down, but do try to keep it focused on the essentials. If you want a book published and to travel the world with your family, stay on the feelings surrounding that desire and don’t get distracted by the unnecessary stuff like what kind of car you’ll get especially if that car is not valuable to your heart.
Next, jot down some bullets of the things you’ll need to accomplish your huge goal from the easiest and quickest to the most complex and time-consuming.
Think of these as stages, not tasks you need to get done by next week.
Start with the first and decide on a fair, but realistic time by which you can get it done. At this point, it should be small enough and with enough time that you’ll be kicking yourself for not doing it. I like to put my dailies on a big paper calendar and in my phone’s calendar with a 2-day reminder set. Give yourself a deadline that you’ll be able to stick with easily. We aren’t sprinting to the finish line, and remember – this isn’t a resolution so there’s no pressure as to when it needs to happen.
The only thing holding you to knocking it out is your own desire for advancement toward the life you love. If you aren’t doing your dailies, you’re staying exactly where you are.
The list serves as a reference point so you don’t get lost and as a motivator to keep going. I mean, we all love checking things off the To Do list. It makes us feel accomplished and deserving of a reward.
It’s play time, baby. Oooh… did somebody say reward? Mmhhmmm.
One thing about me – I take play time very seriously. Take that how you want. Hehe.
We all need time to relax and enjoy the fruits of our labor. And fruits won’t always be money! Fruits could be simply moving down your list, taking your project seriously, and feeling good each day because you’re working towards better for yourself and your family. Fruits could also be the financial freedom resulting from a business that was just a side hustle once upon a time.
All that is terrific. BUT…
Don’t forget to get out and enjoy the life you’re living now. Sometimes we focus so much on where we want to be that where we are completely pasts us by. You’ll never be this young again. Neither will your significant other, or your children. Cherish the day.
Try something new! We all have our default “fun things to do” (movies for my family) and that’s all good, but it’s a big world out there and new experiences are arising everyday.
Just check Groupon. I love Groupon.
For years, a friend and I had been saying we wanted to take a kickboxing class. When her birthday came up, I noticed a deal for 2 weeks’ worth of classes. It was inexpensive, a chance to have some fun while burning serious calories, and now we can both say we knocked one off the bucket list and almost died doing it. Yay!
Give (and get) the gift of an unforgettable experience. Now, for that twerking class my daughter begged me not to go to…
Pshhh, we don’t waste money.
Embrace the imperfection. If I was to wait til this post was perfect, it literally would never be posted. Some things I’m sure could be worded better, sometimes I get passionate (i.e. long-winded), and I’ll probably think of something I should’ve added later and slap myself on the head. But regardless of all that, the work needs to get done and put out there for the world. Otherwise, I’d never have the cojones to put myself out there and the people who may benefit would never get to read the words.
Part of being a perfectionist is inserting too much “logic” into your dream, which will only restrict what’s possible in your life. Stop that right now! Try looking at life more innocently. You’ll improve your chances of making your dreams come true if you stop sabotaging yourself with negativity and uncertainty disguised as logic.
Change your mindset, change your circumstances. When you change your mindset to focus on positive things that energize and inspire you, your goals won’t seem so scary.
We all just want to live well.
This means being good to our bodies in NOT depriving ourselves, but creating a balance. Putting good things in to get good things back. Making exercise a part of our lifestyles, NOT killing ourselves at the gym twice this week, then vegging out on the couch and skipping next week because you dread going again… then the next week… then the next week.
This means staying away from situations or people who make us feel bad. Period.
Until you can pinpoint the issue and address it, stay away. Focus on feeling good and being good to yourself. Once these things become a part of your mindset, and thus, a part of YOU, you won’t feel the need to guilt yourself into resolutions every year because you’ll be consistently working on a balance in all areas of your life. Careful how you invest your energy.