The wave of sentimentality rolls over you December 31st. You reflect upon the passing of another year, the highs and lows, gains and losses. There is a tugging deep within your heart – “I do want this next year to be the year that I _______” and then you fill in the blank with your list. And really, you do want it to be the year that it happens. Then it’s January 1st, then the 2nd, and 3rd – and nothing has changed. Yet we truly wanted it to change!
We live in such a paradox – we long for “things” to be different, yet we find ourselves staying close to our comfort zone and near our safety nets. How do we make the resolutions reality?
Step 1 Dare to Commit
When we make a resolution, we are resolving to do something, with a firm determination. Many times our list is the outcome: lose 10 pounds, balance home and work, conquer procrastination, eliminate debt, become organized, etc. And that’s as far as it goes. What we omit is the commitment to actually do it. We resolve that we want something different in our lives, yet we omit a commitment to actually do it. The saying, “the main thing is to make the main thing the main thing” is true at this point. By daring to commit, you are saying that you will resolve to make this outcome the main thing – and there is determination to make it a reality.
Step 2 Paint The Big Picture
Once we throw the gauntlet in the sand and commit to do something about our resolution, we are gripped with the fear of “how”? This is where the rubber meets the road. The plan needs to be worked out beforehand for the accomplishment of the resolution. This requires work on your part! Beware of anyone offering you the “5 Easy Steps” at this point. Your plan is dependent upon you – where you are in life; what your home, family, and work environments are like; what motivates you; what you can anticipate as obstacles; influence of past accomplishments; how far you are willing to go past your comfort zone; etc. A plan that follows the SMART format (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely) is invaluable to making the resolution real.
Step 3 Benefit from Accountability
Once you have developed a SMART plan add a healthy dose of accountability. Accountability means to be answerable. In what ways will you be answerable? What benchmarks can you add to the SMART plan that will help you stay the course? Who will truly partner with you, with healthy care and concern, to hold you accountable? Accountability is the ingredient for continued focus when the plan doesn’t work as you thought. And of equal importance, accountability is a catalyst for celebration in reaching the milestones!
Making new year resolutions last past January 1st requires being intentional. By following these three steps you get to design a unique plan and create a deliberate way for it to happen – that best fits you. There is margin and forethought given to potential obstacles that can derail the process and celebration of the accomplishments. By using this process you move past that defeated “why bother, I never keep them” attitude. With this proven process, resolutions can happen all year round – in your life, business, and career – not only December 31st!
Jan Hinton is an expert in goal setting and accomplishments. Discover how to change your wishful thinking into an action by calling her, 336.650.1443