Right now is one of my favorite times of the year.
I’m not sure if it’s because the joyous feeling coming right after Christmas or bringing family and friends together or if it’s the excitement of New Year’s Celebrations or what exactly. But, I do, however, know that just because you have taken down your old calendar only to soon replace it with a new one (probably with cats making funny poses), doesn’t mean you have suddenly revitalized all of your time, money, motivation and ambition.
We all are human which means we become creatures of habit. This can have both fantastic and disastrous sides to it. Going for a walk on Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday is a great habit but spending $5.00 each morning on your favorite latte can add up and dwindle your bank account before you realize it. Believe me, I have done this so many times with cold brew coffee, it’s not funny.
The problem is we decide to hide our problems with ourselves in other things and/or people. We feel a New Year, a new car, losing weight, relocation, changing our hair style, a shiny watch, a new job or clothes will provide us the ultimate transformation. “This is exactly what I needed to get going,” people will say. We think these things will finally allow us to unlock our true potential and stop all of our excuses.
For some situations, I do believe this could be the case. For a lot of us though, I think it comes down to sheer confidence within ourselves. We buy these new things like putting on armor going into battle or relocate and change situations as if we are avoiding a pandemic. While new things are awesome, they don’t change us. Once you take off all of that newly acquired armor it’s still just you but I’m here to say that’s a wonderful and tremendous thing.
All you have to realize is you don’t need any of those things to be true to yourself and comfortable with who you are. This doesn’t mean you can’t make small changes and improve on becoming a better person. All it means is be confident in who you are, plain and simple.
Below is my list and a few of the things I’m doing to prep myself to be more confident for the New Year.
- Making a list and checking it twice.
Goal Setting. I can hear your moan and groans now. Not this stuff again. Yes, GOAL setting. There’s a reason it’s number one on this list. I’m not just carelessly putting ideas down on paper, but instead, I’m making a plan for success. I have 30, 60, 90, 180, and 360 day goals all lined up for next year. I’m also making 3, 5 and 10 year goal lists to know the direction of my long-term goals as well.
Does this mean if I don’t hit my goal I’m a failure? No, not exactly. I have goals for what I want to achieve but also, contingency plans in case I do not hit my goals. The… What do I do Now Button. This can eliminate so much stress if you have already thought out several scenarios ahead of time, instead of just winging it.
- Dear Diary
And here I thought my days of English Class were over. Guess what? Since I started jotting things down each day and “journaling” if you will, I have increased my productivity. If nothing else, it helps wake my brain up in the morning. Sometimes I reflect on my day, week, or an event I have attended. I have found what I like doing most is randomly picking a topic or subject matter and writing how it makes me feel.
For example, I may randomly pick a trending topic off of a site, or type random words in Google and select a random image that comes up. This way my brain never knows what’s coming and it is usually just my first impression of a story or piece of art. There are also some journal templates out there that will give you a topic to write about each day, outlined already for you. I haven’t used one of these yet but am defiantly going to try one out soon.
*Tip- Start small maybe 5-10 minutes. Then if you get in a groove stick around and finish your thoughts. Before you know it, you’ll be writing paragraphs.
- Survey Says!
One of the biggest issues people have are excuses and usually come back to NO TIME and NO CASH FLOW. Not having TIME is an excuse of laziness, to me. If I don’t have time for something I really want to do it’s because I have inadequately prepared for my day to allow it.
Now, don’t get me wrong, emergencies come up and sometimes when you do schedule your day you literally can’t fit anything else in. I am not speaking about those scenarios. I’m saying if you’ve always wanted to learn how to paint but say I’m too busy yet spend 2 hours watching Netflix… I think we found our problem.
Scheduling your week and days out showed me where my weak points were and how much extra time I really did have. When you just randomly throw each day out there and hope for the best you are leaving your time to chance. Whether it’s exercise, eating, work day, hobbies, cleaning, etc. I schedule it so I know exactly how much time I spend doing one thing and then move on to the next. It gives me a great sense of accomplishment each time a task is completed throughout my day or week. In turn, making me more confident to continue my day.
*Tip- I plan my weeks out at a minimum of 3 days in advance. Start simple and just work with what 1 hour looks like, or a part of a day then progress to a full day, multiple days, then a week and so on.
- Influential Text
Whether you think you can or you think you can’t—you’re right, Henry Ford.
I used to hate motivational speeches, quotes, stories or anything like it. To me, it just seemed like people who were lazy needed those things and I wasn’t one of them. After reading several books and educating myself further, I realize and understand what simple phrases can do for people. Now I always use quotes and thoughts from others to share their inspiration.
This all comes back to confidence for me. Most of the time I am searching for someone’s permission to do this or that. For them to tell me my idea is great and I will make millions of people have success and be happy. Instead, all I should do is know if I put my mind to it, it can be successful and understand the process of how I need to execute the plan properly. Confidence to me is so crucial.
- Pop Bottles
Unlike year’s past, this year I am planning my work around my vacations. Yes, you heard (rather read) that right. I am planning my trips first and my work second. This may sound crazy but it’s a mind-set thing for me. Instead of “fitting in” some relaxation when I can this time, I’m telling myself to work harder and smarter because you only have x amount of time before your next hiatus.
Think about it. The last time you went on vacation was it amazing? Did you never want it to end? Did you feel actually refreshed when coming back? I don’t think I have ever felt amazing coming back off of vacation and that’s why I have a rule for a 10 day minimum break if I’m going to take one. 10 days for me is the bare minimum to have a blast for a few days somewhere and then come back with 2 days left to unpack and take care of any house work, chores, etc. before I started back to work. I realize this isn’t ideal for everyone due to work, school, children etc. but it is how I have chosen to take my time off and it works for me great.
Regardless of the New Year coming and going, Life is still happening all around you at every moment. I wish I could tell you all of your goals, dreams, and wishes were going to come to pass in 2017. I really do. What I can tell you is with proper planning, the right support system, patients, and some happy thoughts each day, you will be well on your way to starting the year off better than you ever have before!
For more great information on similar topics check out Jenny King’s page http://thejennyking.com/ where you will find tips and tricks on how to get your process going for 2017!