In order to get what you want, you need to decide where you are going. 2009 is going to be an interesting year and you are going to hear lots of noise and advice at every turn. There are going to be a lot of victims this year and a lot of blame being thrown around for people’s circumstances. Make sure that you are not one of them! We can blame the Banks, the Government, the United States economy or [insert your favourite here] for our situations, but ultimately it is up to us to take charge of our own lives and destinies. It is possible to achieve great things in your business even while the economy is contracting.
Stay positive and focus forward
Even if you only toy with the idea of the law of attraction or the power of positive thinking, you will realise that buying into all the negative press and focusing on the ongoing global financial turbulence will have a negative impact on your energy and results. Now more than at any other time we need to stay positive and moving forward if we want to weather the storm. Your mental energy and strength will help you find solutions and creative outcomes for the challenges that lay ahead.
Resolutions for the new year
Are you clear on what you want to achieve? Have you got a personal and business plan for the coming year? The beginning of a new year is a time for creating new resolutions. Unfortunately for many of us these resolutions don’t stick, so decide what you want to achieve this year and promise yourself that you will do what it takes to make it happen. Bill Bartmann, an American billionaire, has created a concept that he calls the Pocket Promise. The principle behind this is that a promise is more powerful than a goal, so make your goals promises to yourself – and then deliver on that promise!
Take 100% responsibility
In The Success Principles by Jack Canfield, the opening chapter begins with Take 100% responsibility for your life and that means in every way. Look at yourself and your life and ask yourself the question – Do you take 100% responsibility your own life? This means every aspect of our life. Your relationships with your partner, your children, your parents, your clients; the level of achievements in your life, the level of success; your financial success; your physical fitness – everything! It is within our power to affect each of these areas. It may not be instant, but with attention and focus we can achieve better results.
Where are you going?
Before you start on your journey, you need to decide where it is that you are going. You can do this on both a business and a personal level. So take some time out and decide what your goals are across all areas of your life. You will have no doubt heard the statistics that only 5% of people write down their goals and if you do this you are ahead of the game.
Write them down (yes – this really is the most important step of all!)
Take some time now and write down your goals. Take yourself away from your usual situation and give yourself a quiet couple of hours to really focus on what it is that you want to achieve.
How to get started
This is up to your preferred way of working. If you like structure to your goal setting an effective breakdown is:
Financial Goals, Business Goals, Family Goals, Health & Well-being, Relationship Goals, Spiritual, Just for Fun (this means stuff for you!) and Personal Growth
These are just a guide and you might have priorities that are more important to you.
One way of getting started is to brainstorm as many goals as you like (don’t judge them, just allow them to free flow out of you) and then segment them into the different categories.
Write it out in detail
There are many ideas on how a goal should be structured. I’m a believer in thinking big (you can read a great book The Magic of Thinking Big by David Schwarz if you are looking for the reasons why) and like to have big goals. The only thing I recommend here is that you have to make sure that your goals are achievable with the time, energy and resources you have available. I heard a quote once that people over estimate what they can achieve in one year but underestimate what they can achieve in five. So stretch yourself, but also be realistic about your timing.
The structure of a goal
Be specific: Put some detail around the goal. The subconscious needs a clear idea on what it is going to focus on, so rather than saying I’m going to lose weight, create a goal that is specific by saying I am going to visit Weight Watchers every week. I am going to exercise 3 times a week
Give it a clear outcome: How will you know when you have achieved the goal. What is the specific measure of success. Is it getting 50 new customers; is it earning £10,000 per month? Be specific about the result that you a going for.
Write down why it is important: It is one thing to write a goal, but the goal needs to resonate with you. It needs to be important enough for you to give it the time and attention that it needs to be achieved. So why has this goal made it on to your list, what do you get out of it if you succeed. What kind of a difference is it going to make in your life.
Timescales: When are you going to achieve the goal by? Put down a date in the future when you plan to have achieved the goal that you have created. Again, this helps focus you on the outcome and keeps it at the forefront.
Review and update
First look at your goals. Are they balanced? Do they make sense in your life? Have you put in some personal ones for yourself? Once you have them listed, you can then prioritise them into an order of importance and priority. At this stage have a look at the goals that you have set and decide which ones, if you focused on them in your life now, have the potential to change your life.
These are going to become the ones that you will develop further into action plans. We will be covering the goal action plan next week. Writing down a goal is only one part of the process. You have to integrate that goal into your life in a way that is easy for you to keep your attention on it.
Read those goals everyday
Some ideas for keeping your goals in front of you every day:
1. Post your most important goals on your fridge so you see them every time you open it
2. Create some 3 x 5 index cards and leave them by your bed so you can read them every time you get up or go to bed
3. Write your main goal on the back of one of your business cards and look at it every time you open your wallet
4. Put your goals as a screen saver on your computer, so every time you go away from your computer you can see and review them
5. Give yourself 5 minutes every morning to review your goals every morning before you open your emails
6. Create a goal journal which is where each goal is listed along with a mind map on the actions that need to be taken to reach them. This journal becomes your own personal success log
It’s an ongoing love affair
Goals are not and should not be static. They should grow and develop with you as you learn and take on new challenge. Learn to fall in love with the process of dreaming and enjoy the idea of what is possible. You will find that almost every successful person you meet has gone through this process and most of them will have physical reminders that are always with them that keep them on target.
Each week we will be releasing a new article that relates to you creating more success in your business and your life.