Whynot? Is celebrating 10 years this year; so I thought I might share a few of my ‘top tens’ to help you to get the most out of your performance and productivity in 2017.
I love the start of the year, that feeling of a new year, new you, new opportunities etc. etc. Some folk call it the ‘January factor’, but whatever you want to call it, people just love setting New Year’s Resolutions. If you’ve not seen the James Cordon and Meghan Trainor video, it’s well worth a watch; it’s a very funny take on New Year’s Resolutions.
Meanwhile, I noticed some stats, from Forbes a while ago, that suggested that only 8% of people achieve their New Year’s resolutions, are you one of those people? Or do you find yourself struggling to carry on like so many others?
If you do, here are 10 very easy questions to help you find a more successful path to reaching your goals in 2017.
Grab yourself a ‘cuppa’, a pen and some paper and have a go at answering the following.
What is the motivation behind your goal?
What makes this so important to you? Understanding your motivation gives you a sense of purpose, something that is bigger than you, that you can hang onto. Statements like “I want to be more productive” or “I want to be fitter” simply don’t work. Use the analytical part of your brain to analyse why the goal is important.
What does your goal look like?
What does a successful outcome look like for you? It is suggested that in quantum physics the more you visualise something the more likely it is to happen in that way. Try and really zone into the conceptual part of your brain and give your image as much flavour as you can.
How close are you to reaching your goal now and when do you want to achieve it by?
Understanding your start and end point will help you to appreciate what lies ahead of you. It will also allow you to create an upward trajectory towards accomplishing your desired outcome.
How are you going to achieve your goal?
Sounds simple but having a tangible plan is essential to reaching your goal. The structural part of your brain can assist you in this, start with 21 steps that you can connect to actions everyday. Doing something everyday over a period of time helps you to form new neural pathways so that your goal becomes easier.
What are your mini goals?
Having one big goal is great, but it’s important to have smaller tangible goals too. This helps you to notice the progress you are making towards your final goal, and helps build your confidence. Remember Philippe Petite the French man who eventually walked on a high wire between the twin towers; he started with a rope in his back garden, then conquered Notre Dame and Sydney Harbour Bridge (each a little more stretching) before attempting his final goal. Don’t forget to celebrate each tiny step.
Who can help you to achieve your goal?
Identifying people to help you to achieve your goal or benefit from your success satisfies the social part of your brain. It also creates accountability so that you are not alone in your endeavour.
Which previous successes can you draw strength from?
There are times in our lives when we may have experienced ‘being in the zone’ or to give it its full title the ‘zone of optimal functioning’. This is when someone (often athletes) performs to his or her absolute maximum or has the perfect game. Can you think of a time when you may have experienced this? If so, what were you doing/what was happening to create this? How can you use that experience to help you achieve your new goal?
What will return you to action when the going gets tough?
It takes time, hard work, will power, effort and perseverance to really accomplish something meaningful and there can often be obstacles that get in our way. (Like leftover Christmas cake in my case!) Knowing what obstacles could sabotage your plans and allowing for a little flexibility can help you to keep moving forward.
What are your key strengths?
Working from a position of strength is always a better place to start. When you are tapping into your natural resources then you are more likely to be successful. http://www.viacharacter.org is a brilliant free tool based on positive psychology that helps you to appreciate your inner strengths. Spend 10 minutes completing the questionnaire to help you get clarity around your strengths.
How are you going to celebrate your success?
It is critical that you celebrate your success once you’ve achieved your goal especially when you have worked so hard. That feeling of euphoria can release important hormones like oxytocin that can act as a neurotransmitter to future success.
Good luck with whatever you want to achieve this year! I hope that that 2016 is rich in meaning, health, happiness and success!