It’s that time of year again where resolutions are made, new goals are set, a clean sheet, fresh start, new beginnings.
So what is it that you truly desire to enhance your life and leave you feeling fulfilled and successful?
What do you want?
What other question is there to ask?
What makes you happy?
What don’t you want?
Not many of us have total clarity on what it actually is that we want.
We have a fair vision sometimes that usually involves having the financial freedom to have total freedom of choice.
But are we really sure why we want it? And if not, is it really what we want?
What do I want to do as a career? What will I do in my retirement? What will I do with my family before they grow up and leave home?
These are the most important questions we all have to answer in our lives.
So start with the past year. What happened last year that has taken you further towards your goals?
Did you set goals this time last year? What were they? Did you achieve those goals?
Were they what you thought they would be?
Do you now feel the way you hoped you would after hitting those goals?
If you didn’t write out your goals and keep a track of your progress, this is the perfect opportunity to start with a clean page and measure your success for this coming year.
If you didn’t keep a journal or spreadsheet, of your success, and you don’t have a clear picture of what you have achieved, the chances are you may not be feeling satisfied or fulfilled.
A great way to put the pieces of the past 12 months back together is to look back through your timeline on your social media apps.
Dig into the archives of your inbox, look at your bank statements and through your photo roll on your phone and piece back together what you spent the past year doing.
So how much progress have you made? More than you think?
More importantly, is it what you hoped for? Was it what you wanted?
By taking the time to think into this deep subject, we can determine whether we will live a fully intentional life this coming year or one that we thought we wanted.
So create a 12 month vision for yourself.
Project yourself into the future and look back at your year from January 2019.
What has to have happened for your life to have been a success in those 12 months?
What are your earnings, what does the shape of your business look like? What holidays have you had? What are you driving? How much money do you have in the bank? What does your house look like? Who is your partner? What advances have you made in your career,? How have you helped others?
If you’re going to sit here in January 2019 and say, “that was a truly successful year, I got everything I wanted” – How does it look?
Spending an hour a day over a few days to write out this vision will help you find what you want.
Come back to it and reflect on what you wrote in your vision, and question yourself – “ Is this really what I want?”
Another great simple way of proofing your desires is to apply the 3 why’s to each goal.
Goal : I want to double my take home pay.
Why 1: So I don’t have to worry about money any more
Why 2: So I can take my family on holiday and treat them to nice things.
Why 3: So I can spend quality time with those that I love.
Digging down to that level on each goal helps you understand what your true desires are and that you have a real authentic reason that resonates with your values.
The alternative is that you create a goal that may not serve you that well.
Goal: I want to double my take home pay
Why 1: So I can buy a new car
Why 2: Because my neighbour has one, so I want one.
Why 3: Because it will make me look successful and flash.
Is that a goal worth spending a lot of effort working towards?
Getting really clear on what it is that we want can be the most liberating breakthrough that will enable us to design every aspect of our career and personal lives with deliberate milestones that will ensure we are not left feeling inadequate, materialistic and anxious about our future.
Are you determined that you are going to live intentionally or are you happy going with the flow
Most of us reading this know that we want to live into our full potential.
We want the spare cash, the nice cars, the amazing holidays and big home for our families to have space and enjoyment in.
And why not, after all, its achievable for any of us but the chances of us reaching that status are accelerated if we have total focus and clarity on what it is that we actually want and why we want it.
How do we clarify what it is that we want?
Do you have a crystal clear picture of how your life looks in 1, 10 or 20 years?
If you do, that’s great.
If you’re like most of the rest of us, we have a fair idea that we’re headed in the right direction, but we can’t seem to articulate the exact details.
Imagine how different your decision making process would be if you knew EXACTLY what your end goal was?
I’ll share a story of a friend and mentor of mine who explained this to me and flicked on the light bulb in my mind on just how important this is to do before you do anything else.
“I made a decision that I wanted enough cash to live my current lifestyle, but I only want to work 3 days instead of the usual 6 or 7 that I do currently.
I want the extra time so I can spend it with my family doing stuff that I choose to do, without the commitment of having to be in my business for 70 hours a week.”
70 hours a week would give me all the cash I need, but deny me the most important resource on the planet which is time. I know my time is limited here, I can always make more money but not more time”
So this guy worked out his current life expenditure which worked out to be £250,000. This gave him the freedom to do most of the things he and his family enjoyed doing.
“I then doubled that figure for comfort, so I would have a contingency if anything went wrong.”
So he knew exactly what he wanted – time with family, freedom to spend, less working time.
He also had a figure to work to. £500,000 per year.
He answered “I have £250,000 spare cash a year after my living costs, what would I do with any more money?”
His original “want”, was more time with his family, less time at work and the freedom to live his comfortable lifestyle.
“If I took on more deals, bigger opportunities that would increase that £500k, I’d also be inviting more time at work, bigger problems, less time with my family – that’s not what I want.”
So the impact this has on the decisions he now makes are huge. He can say no with confidence knowing that he is truly living into his values.
If you divide the goal amount by the amount of desired work days, he can decide on any opportunities, by asking the question, “does this make me £3,333 per day.”
He can build his strategy and plans on that exact figure, instead of wondering whether he can squeeze a little bit more out of a week, or maximise a deal somehow.
This is clarity.
If he later decides that he wants more, he can always reset the goals, but having that clarity kept him on track and ensured he wasn’t doing more in the name of growth and maximum potential.”
Constantly pushing the boundaries outward.
It’s easy for us to say, “I want it all, I’m always going to keep growing and live into my potential.”
We set goals, and as we’re approaching those goals, we reset them a little higher, go past the original goal with minimal celebration because we already have our sights set on the new horizon.
Why do we do that? Is it because we have this idea that we should always be growing?
I’m going to challenge that assumption that we always seem to have about growth.
So what’s the right way of goal setting?
Some say aim for the sun, hit the moon.
Some say goals should be realistic and achievable.
Who’s to say either of those perspectives are right?
Achieving a goal that is in line with your values and true desires in life will always result in happiness.
Set your sights and stick to them. Enjoy the Plateau. You can always aim for more next year.
Our sense of accomplishment is rarely fulfilled with just the materialistic achievements such as houses, cars, clothes, jewellry (although these things are great!).
It is fulfilled with feelings and emotions.
Gratitude, generosity, love and achievement.
So choose what you want carefully, you might just get it!