It's nearly that time of year again for setting and forgetting your New Year's resolutions. There is something invigorating about the idea of being able to start anew that motivates us all to take pause and reflect on our lives and where we want to be going. But how many times have you thought back to last year's resolutions and found that many or most of them were forgotten after only a few weeks?
Most people have difficulty following through on New Year resolutions in particular, but the following tips should help you make and commit to your most important resolutions for 2010.
1. Start with a vision
If you don't know what you want your future to look like, how can you work out how to get there? Spend some quiet time reflecting on and writing down what is good, bad and incomplete in your life. Then try to visualize your perfect life if all of these areas were addressed. This is the basis of your life vision.
2. Expand your horizons
Make a commitment to learn something different. This will help build a sense of purpose and can also give you additional resources to assist you in your career or personal life. You may even be surprised by what you can do when you challenge yourself.
3. Set challenging but realistic goals
Select goals that stretch and challenge you, but are also realistic and possible to achieve. Impossible goals are doomed to failure. Concentrate on what you really want for your life and let this be your guide.
4. Write down your goals
It's important to write your New Year resolutions and goals down on paper and keep them where you can see them daily. Remember, out of sight, out of mind. It also helps to show them to a good friend or family member, who can provide support and encouragement.
5. Create action steps for each goal
There's no point having a goal if you have no plan to help you achieve it. Break each goal down into small action steps or tasks, and write down all the steps and tasks. Set a date for completion to make sure you follow through and make sure you monitor your progress against your goals so you can achieve your desired end results.
6. Take care of yourself
Eat well, exercise regularly and manage stress. Afterall, if your body and mind aren't in tip top shape, how do you expect to find the energy and motivation to achieve your goals?
7. Eliminate bad habits
Bad habits sabotage your efforts to achieve your goals and live a functional life, and they also consume your limited resources of time, energy and focus. Aim to eliminate your bad habits, and have a good habit in mind to replace it with.
8. Set appropriate and healthy limits
Know your limits and enforce them with yourself, as this is vital for a healthy and prosperous life. Learn to say "no" and "that's enough", and be firm in your resolve that this is a good thing to do. Otherwise, you will be undermining your resolution to take care of yourself.
9. Be the kind of person you want to be with
Bringing out the best qualities in yourself will help to ensure that you attract people of good quality into your life, whether this is for a personal or professional relationship. Afterall, you pick and choose who you want in your life based on their qualities, and other people do too.
10. Get organized
And finally, getting organized is the key to being able to achieve what you want to achieve. Clear away clutter and think about your existing systems for management and organization and see if these need any reworking. Keep one calendar to record all appointments and events, and use a diary to write down everything else so you don't have to rely on your memory.
So armed with the above tips, begin this year with the resolve to be the person you know you have the potential to be. You'll be surprised by what you can actually accomplish once you put your mind to it!
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