So we’re approaching a new year yet again. I’m genuinely surprised that we managed to survive up until now. I have no idea what 2021 has in store for us, but we’ve already endured enough to take on whatever challenges it brings.
I’ve discussed the concept of reflecting, habits and preparing for a new year before. You can click on any of the hyperlinks to read those posts in more detail. Considering that December is around the corner, I thought it would be a good idea to get the ball rolling.
Prepare in advance
This philosophy has carried me a long way in terms of getting things done. Whenever we take on a new task, project or habit, it initially seems like a mountain to climb. There’s just way too much to do and it can be very daunting.
The solution? Start before you’re meant to start.
It works like a charm. If you’re writing an essay or a report for example, start with setting up your template before you even get your assignment brief. Maybe even get the introduction in while you’re at it. If you’re planning to start exercising, keep your outfit ready the night before. If you want to get into reading, keep the book by your bedside and read 1 page before you sleep.
“You can only eat an elephant one bite at a time.”
It’s more or less about mentally preparing. You’re telling yourself: ‘Ha, I’ve already started… Let’s just continue and make a little more progress.’
Starting is more often than not where the most friction is. If you can find a way to lubricate the beginning, it’ll make your life a lot simpler. Prepare in advance for any of your endeavors.
Write down your goals
It’s as simple as that. Write. Down. Your. Goals. If you don’t know what to write, that’s enough of an indication that you need to start working on yourself. You’re essentially creating a map to direct your energy, perhaps we could call it a compass.
There’s an infinite number of directions that we can take in our lives. We need to figure out which ones are the most worthwhile and aligned with our values. You need to carefully start thinking about this, well before the new year comes.
*FYI, I’m just using the new year as a reference point. It psychologically helps with making abrupt changes in our lives. We should be doing these practices throughout the year at any given point.
If you don’t know where you’re going, you’ll never get there.
Everything we use today is a result of someone’s imagination. It’s been thought of or visualized before. We all operate in a similar way. We’re guided by our thoughts.
Energy follows focus
Keep in mind that the more we contemplate our goals and visualize ourselves achieving them, the more likely we are to relentlessly chase them. You’re constantly reminding your subconscious of what you want. It’s essentially what we do when we pray for things that we want.
Yes, a lot of it is out of our control and somethings are destined for us, while other things are not. That doesn’t mean we should try our best to get what it is we do want. This also works best as soon as you wake up or before you go to bed. Your mind is still hazy and you absorb information a lot quicker into your psyche.
When you do visualize, really put effort into it. Feel the emotions. Feel the celebration. Feel the contentment of working hard and achieving your objectives.
We are all just a bunch of mistakes. Each and every day, we make several terrible choices. We also occasionally make a few great ones. The best way to filter those decisions and differentiate between what worked and what didn’t, is to reflect on them regularly. It’s how we make sure we don’t repeat the same mistakes again.
Before you go to bed, take stock of how the day went. What were the range of emotions? Did you achieve what you set out to do? What worked really well for you? What was a complete waste of time? What did you learn today?
These are some really great questions that we should keep in mind as often as possible. Don’t ever stop learning, especially from your own life. The treasure is there and it’s infinite, we just need to be willing to dig in.
Now we’re getting to the crux of things. The post today was essentially meant to encourage you take action. To embrace change. To keep striving to improve yourself.
It’s always easier said than done. Something we’ve evolved to do is take the past of least resistance. What does that mean exactly? Well, it basically means that we’ll keep doing the same easy thing over and over again, if it give us average results. But even when we do keep at it, things just pop up and force us to adapt.
“Change is inevitable, resistance is futile.”
Ultimately, what we need to do is become more adaptable. If we start making changes in our own life and gain a new perspective, it’ll mean that we are becoming more comfortable with change. Become comfortable being uncomfortable.
“The only constant in life is change.”
And there you have it; a growth mindset. Which a central theme yet again. Because we are only capable of much more than we think we are. Our greatest limitation is our own thoughts. Remove the sentence ‘I can’t’ from your vocabulary. Whatever you’re overcoming, whatever you’re struggling to achieve, whatever you’ve been praying for, just remember: Not yet.