As the years winds to its end there’s always a lot happening in everyone’s lives.  For most people, this includes thinking about plans for the new year.  It’s a time of reflection of the year that has passed.  From the plans that were made at the start of this year, which have we followed through on and which ones never made it past January?

Here, we find ourselves in December, beating ourselves up for not having achieved most of those “big plans” we had, convincing ourselves that the next year will be different. Have you ever considered why for so many of us, these New Year’s resolutions are nothing more than wishful thinking and daydreaming?

Doing it differently

Perhaps this year we can do things a little differently. Instead of just putting together a list of half thought out ideas and targets to achieve because it seems like the right thing to do or because it’s all over social media and is every second hashtag, rather stop the hamster wheel and get off.

Think of this like learning to juggle for the first time, to learn the skill you have to start with 2 or 3 balls and then move on to more. You can’t start at 15 and expect to keep them all in the air without dropping the lot.

Take some time out from all the holiday festivities and spend some time alone. Figure what is really important to you to change or remove from your life, choose just 2 or 3, no more than that. The thing is, life gets busy and it’s impossible to do everything and most times it’s the things that we want for ourselves that end up being compromised and given up on.

Once you have your 2 or 3 items, you can’t just leave it there. There needs to be substance for it to gain some traction in your mind, specifically your subconscious mind. Fill in the details, if you want to lose weight, earn more, overcome an illness, whatever it is. Give it specifics, by when would you like to achieve this (Give it a date) put numbers to it, how much weight, how much money, define what you need to achieve.

Place this where you will see it daily, for some people the words are enough, others are more visual.  Make it into a mini vision board pictures with the words, but the details need to be on there as well.

Ready, Set, Plan

Once that is done, it’s time to turn this dream into a plan. We know what the end goal is (12 months’ time), now break it down to the quarters (every 3 months), these will be your milestones.  Break those down to the month now. This makes it less daunting a goal to achieve. In the month we have 4 weeks, what are you going to do in each of those weeks to reach the targets. You only need to do this for the first 3 months now.  When you in the 3rd month, do the detailed plan for the next 3 months, making adjustments to achieve the end goal.

This entire process makes it easier to not give it all up.  The next thing is to be very honest with yourself and answer the question of “Can I do this alone?” if you need to enlist help, find the help you need, a life coach, a therapist, a trainer, etc. Do this before you get started not when you ready to give up.  Your frame of mind has a big impact on getting the right help and staying with your plan or giving up.