If you’re anything like me, your heart may be engrossed in all things holiday right now but your mind is thinking about the new year. I tend to be pretty goal driven and if you’ve been around for awhile then you know that anything new- a season, a birth year, a school year and sometimes even a new month gets my wheels spinning and my goal setting goes into overdrive.
Even if you aren’t a box checker or a goal setter you might still be looking forward to what the new year and (even better) the new decade has in store for us. 2020 seems almost surreal to me. I remember when the year 2000 seemed like something from the kind of future that the Jetsons represented when I was growing up. But here we are on the verge of 2020 and while I’m not interested in flying cars (though Tesla seems to be working out the kinks in their self-driving cars) what I do hope is that this will be a year filled with magic, hope and restoration.
I’m slightly giddy about these possibilities and I’ve already chosen my word for the year- focus. I went with focus because this year has been a lot of wearing multiple hats, saying no to some things that in hindsight might have been a good fit and saying yes to things in my personal life that really weren’t. I was distracted by situations that no longer matter and therefore shouldn’t have taken center stage and intrigued by things that didn’t really deserve my attention either. Luckily at my core I have some pretty good ideas about what I want out of life and where I would like to go, and so even though I sometimes swerved in 2019 I never really left my course. But this year- this big beautiful year of 2020, I’m doubling down and getting laser focused. I have decided it’s time to stop having one foot outside of the door. And if you are interested in getting focused for the new year too here are a few things that you can do:
- Get rid of the clutter-I have said before that I really believe that the reason that show about tidying up is such a phenomenon is that it really resonates with us on a level deeper than cleaning our closets. There are internal and external things in our lives that we are holding onto that we no longer need and that are taking up emotional and mental energy. Let go of grudges, bad habits, and maybe even relationships that are holding you back. Make an actual list of top 5 things that caused you stress or grief in 2019. Be specific about what it was about those things that made your year challenging. Then take a look at the things you can control. Maybe you can’t quit your job but somewhere in the details there has to be a solution. When my part-time work schedule required me to go in every day I knew that wasn’t working well so I renegotiated my schedule and came up with a plan that would work better for me. Working a longer day a few days a week so that I could have a day off helped tremendously.
- Ask yourself the miracle question-there is a strategy in solution focused counseling that asks clients to imagine that a miracle has happened and now their proposed problem is no longer there. The key here is that you don’t realize there has been an actual miracle. But your life is now different. What do you notice first? Asking yourself this question will be a variation of this technique, but ask yourself what does your life now look and feel like? Who is there with you? What are you doing that brings you the satisfaction and joy that you are hoping for. So many of us might have goals but we never really fully envision what it will look or feel like when we get there.The miracle question used in this way allows us to think bigger without making ourselves small. And visualization isn’t just about imagining, it’s also about brain science. It actually calls your brain to action.
- Narrow down your big goal-if you’re anything like me visualizing might include many goals coming together and that’s great, but what really stands out as your overarching big audacious goal? Get clear about that. Will starting your own business get you to that life that you were imagining or will going back to school to get an additional certification land you the new promotion you are hoping for? Focus on that. Get specific and write down the steps you need to accomplish this year to get you closer to it. Then do a focus check in and maybe even enlist an accountability partner. Check in every three-four months to see what kind of progress you have made. Breaking your big audacious goal into bite size pieces and having a time table for for those bites will help you maintain your focus and get you closer to your new vision!
Those are my tips for focusing on my goals this year. I’d love to hear what your plans are too and how you stay focused on your goals throughout the year. Cheers to 2020 friends!
Until Next Post,
Xo Tonya Parker