I am not a fan of going out on New Year's Eve, to be honest it is over-rated to me. I take a more deep and meaningful view of New Year: there is something about the clock ticking Midnight and a whole twelve months to Make Something Happen. Every year my ritual is to make a resolution list on New Year's Day, re-read it about one hundred times so I know my intentions and then hide it until New Year's Eve. I then look at what I wanted to change in the year. It is a great method to make a difference to your life as you can visualise the changes you want to make.
My resource I set my life by is my diary; I am not just talking the odd appointment but it is my guide to making my objectives happen. I like writing down my objectives and setting myself a deadline as to when I will make it happen. Through the process of writing it down, I am instigating the change. Even if the change appears a long way off you are instigating the Change Now by proposing the idea and working out how to implement it. Moreover,a proposal is as important as a change and cannot be made without a plan of action.
To do this, I use the SMART model.
Smart stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time - Based. For instance :-
Is the plan specific enough? This is where major mistakes are made in instigating a change. For instance, stating you want to lose weight is simply not specific. You need to say how much you intend to lose and how you intend to it.
Once you have made this statement, you need to test out how you will measure your objective. With weight loss this method is obvious: a weigh-in will tell you if you have succeeded. Other objectives may not be that clear. For instance, if you want to be debt-free what defines that for you? If you want to settle down what does that mean? You need to state how you will measure your objective.
The next question is the aim attainable? This is a significant consideration as if you over-stretch yourself you will not succeed. So, giving yourself a healthy time-limit is important. This can go either way: if you want to be debt-free if you make the deadline too short you could make your situation worse. However, if you want to find a new job giving yourself too long a time period will mean it may not happen. Ask yourself is it a healthy deadline? If you are unsure, talk to friends and family. Or, hire me to help (contact details are below!)
Considering whether the goal is relevant to your life is also a significant consideration. For instance, if you want a new job but are already CEO of a company the goal may appear irrelevant! If you want to set-up your own business why does going it alone matter to you? What makes this relevant to your life and your situation? Answering these questions is important stage in any plan.
Finally, time-based is the stage which will make the plan cohesive. You need to identify how you will meet the objective. For example, if you do want to own your own business, what will keep you maintaining your goal in more difficult days when the goal seems far from reach? Have you added in these difficult times into the deadline? You could also consider chunking down the objective into smaller tasks to help you reach the main aim. If you do, consider when these will take place. This stage is so important with less clear objectives. If you want to be less anxious, when do you start? What are the specific stages? Do you buy a self-help book? See your GP? Book a life-coaching session? Find a support group? When do you do this? What happens if your first solution doesn’t work? Answering these questions will be beneficial to meeting your goal.
Once I have completed each stage of the SMART model I log the plan in my diary on the date the objective was set and I record all other noteworthy dates and what deadline needs are to be met or what I am doing on a specific day.
Get a diary and Change Now! In the mean time, my free resource may help.
This May, Direct Action is launching its Anxiety Course which includes over 25 new recipes in a radical plan to make your life easier. More information soon.
Do you feel life-coaching could be useful for you to seek direction? All consultations are online via Skype, Zoom or FaceTime. Life-coaching can help with a variety of problems or to help you get set on a challenge. Contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org or on 07544 899 681.