Happy New Year! I hope you had a great Christmas holiday and New Year. The last week of the year, starting before Christmas to the end of the year is definitely a time to cherish, spend time with family, relax, reflect, and yes eat a lot!
I love the excitement of a new year. It signifies a fresh start. It is telling that we get so excited about a fresh start. It implies we think we can do better than we did in the previous year. It ushers in new hope and anticipation and for many of us New Year’s resolutions.
I recently read that if you start the year with momentum and use it to accomplish most of your goals within the first 90 days of the year then you are well on your way to a great year! Momentum not only refers to motion, but the power residing in the moving object.
Most of us start the year with momentum derived from the excitement of a fresh start. The challenge is to sustain the momentum for a prolonged period of time to create power and sustained action towards your goals. I recently joked that most people start the year like a 100 meter dash and run out of gas by the first or second week of the year. Have you ever noticed runners who run ahead of everyone else at the start of a marathon? They almost always drop out.
To sustain your momentum and motivation to accomplish your goals for the year, you need to start strong but not too strong and you need a strategy to deal with the “valleys” and “hills” of the year. You can count on the “valleys” and “hills”, they always show up! Don’t be surprised when they do, be prepared. Here are a few tips to help you this year.
First, write down ten goals you would like to accomplish this year on a piece of paper. Then, select one goal which would have the most positive impact in your life. Write this goal on a second piece of paper and break it down into actionable steps. On this second piece of paper, write down five reasons why this goal is very important to you. Be very clear about the reasons because they will be your source of motivation or “fuel” when the “valleys” and “hills” show up. Review your goal, actionable steps, and reasons every single day. Finally, determine to take action, however small, every single day until this first goal is accomplished. When you are done with this goal, congratulate yourself and move on to the second goal using the same strategy.
Second, let your actions drive your feelings and emotions, and not the other way around. This is one of the most powerful secrets to sustained action and motivation towards your goals. If you allow your feelings and emotions to drive your actions, you will feel like a million dollars one day and emotionally drained the next, which needless to say is a poor strategy to accomplish your goals. One of my favorite motivational speakers, Brian Tracy, defines discipline very well. He says, “Discipline is doing what you are supposed to do, when you are supposed to do it, whether you feel like it or not”. The things that unsuccessful people and successful people don’t like to do are the same, the difference is that successful people do them anyway.
2012 is going to be a great year for some while for others it will be just like 2011. The choice is yours. What kind of year do you want to celebrate on December 31, 2012? I believe it will be a great year for you. I wish you joy, peace, love, good health, and 100% success on your goals for the New Year.
Meditate on the verse below:
Deuteronomy 30:19 “This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live.”