Welcome once more to the first day of a new year!
Traditionally this is the one day of the year where we all take a moment to consider the events of the year just gone, and look at what might be in store for us in the new year ahead.
Too many times these resolutions that we make are full of frivolity and last but a few days, before they are broken, dismissed and forgotten for the remainder of the next 12 months. We make decisions to break bad habits and to begin good ones. We focus on the minor aspects of our daily life, little things which we might like changed, that could make our life a little easier or better.
We focus on the insignificant rather than the significant.
Such as they are, resolutions like this are usually not kept for very long because they are more like wishful thinking than they are goals.
This is why we should not make resolutions, but should rather set specific high level goals, which then have dated deadlines underneath.
Last year (2014) I set myself four goals, and achieved three of them. And I achieved them while holding down a demanding full-time job. There were a few unfinished projects which I had lingering over me for a while, and at the beginning of that year I decided to complete them no matter what. I declared in my journal that this would be a ‘year of finishing’ and I wrote down the four projects that I would aim to achieve, over that year.
The projects were:
1. Complete and Publish my first book ‘Powerful Christian Radio.’
2. Complete and Launch my first feature film ‘1500 Steps.’
3. Complete and Submit to USA competitions a feature screenplay.
4. Write a children’s novel for my daughter.
I knew that I really wanted to get the first two completed and the other two would be niceties, which could easily roll over into the following year. As things turned out, before the end of November 2014 I had in fact achieved the first three. I was amazed at this, and it certainly brought with it a strong feeling of accomplishment. But I only achieved any of them because I set myself specific written goals, which were then dated with specific deadlines.
Incredibly, when I looked back in my journal, these goals were not written down on the first of January (the traditional time for new year resolutions), but were recorded towards the end of February! This is significant to note because it is indicative of the importance of written goals, and not the necessity of resolutions passed on the first of January.
So this year, may I encourage you to focus on setting goals for significant things you have always wanted to achieve, and to stay right away from frivolous resolutions. Set yourself projects you want to see accomplished.
Specifically I encourage you to:
1. Set yourself between 2 and 4 bigger goals which you want to see happen before next Christmas.
2. Write them down.
3. Write realistic deadlines to which each goal must be accomplished by.
4. Set yourself mini-goals underneath each of them, also with dated deadlines.
5. Make achieving these goals an important priority, working on one at a time, and working on them a little each day over the next 12 months.