The summer heat may be all we need to resign to holiday mode even though December hasn’t even began yet, but the transition into the silly season is imminent, especially because the malls won’t let you forget – not to mention make you panic, or feel insufficient in your efforts to achieve your goals for the year – that time has run out, given Christmas colors in your face at every corner.
As the “normal” work-mode season slows down, it’s a natural time to evaluate the year—after all, there’s only a few weeks of it left.
How are you feeling about 2016 so far?
Many people will answer this question with dissatisfaction. They hoped to be earning more or weighing less by now. They wanted to be in a new relationship they adore or out of an old job they hate… I personally could say (if I wanted to sulk or whatever) 2016 has been the worst year of my life, but it hasn’t been. Have I had high and lows? Oh yes, more lows than I’ve lost count of, but I choose to highlight the highs.
This is a great time to kick-start change and begin again
The good news: This is a great time to kick-start change and begin again. For me, it marks the start of my “I-can-and-I-will” mode, you know, my #Mission52 post-first edition workshop mode, when my focus sharpens and my motivation peaks. My motivation, I want to help people, especially women, set goals and actually realize their biggest dreams in 2017 through #Mission52.
You don’t need a new calendar year or a list of resolutions to get your sh*t together.
If 2016 hasn’t shaken out exactly as you hoped, start getting back on track by asking yourself these two questions:
1. What unexpected lessons have I learned this year?
Did you discover a new favorite author or workout class? Did you learn to stop trusting a friend who doesn’t deserve your confidence? Did you stand up for yourself at work? Did you say yes to a spontaneous date, trip, or seminar? You don’t need to start a new job, run a marathon, or have a thriving side gig to have made progress. Heck—even signing up for my 52-day wellness and self-development course this year (with relief) that you would have said no to one year ago (out of fear of “what if”) is a major sign of growth! For the first time in your life, you’re doing something for yourself through #Mission52. Kudos!
The beauty of goal-setting and achievements is that once you achieve one thing, your motivation to dare do something more peaks
2. Have my desires shifted?
Think about that for a second. Do you still want the same things you did in January? Maybe your true desires have changed, but you still hold yourself to an old blueprint that leaves you feeling heavy and uncertain. Perhaps you wanted a promotion but now all you can really think of is a career change. Maybe you wanted to move to a new city, but you’ve met someone romantically who lives in your current town. But you feel stuck because of the consequences you might have to endure once you decide to take the leap. What to do? What to do?
Life is that dynamic and ever-changing, so it’s natural (and good!) for your desires to shift too. You’re also allowed to change your mind. In fact, the fast-moving evolution of life can be really encouraging!
Step 2: Set Goals
In the spirit of moving toward what you want (and it’s OK if it’s the same things you wanted in January), it’s time to take action.
1. Write down three specific things you really, really want
Imagine this New Year’s Eve a friend asks how 2016 was for you, and you answer, “Incredible!” (and mean it). What are the three things that would need to change between now and then?
Be as specific as you can. No one knows what you truly want but you. Will you have taken an overseas adventure to Thailand, earned extra income on the side as a yoga instructor, received a 20 percent raise, or adopted a dog? Write them down.
2. Set goals (and a timeline) for each desire.
No matter what anyone says, five weeks is a very long time! You can do so much between now and December 31. Using the above examples, you could set out and accomplish the following goals.
Travel to Thailand: Research flights and hotels online, evaluate funds, book time off work, and then buy the damn ticket.
Get a raise or land a big business deal: Submit a brilliant project at work or go the extra mile in a way your manager will appreciate. If you own a business, set out to get that big project you’ve been feeling is too big for mere you. When timing feels right, ask your boss for a 10-minute meeting where you share your salary increase request. Better try and get a no, than never trying and regret it later.
Earn money by teaching yoga: Create a list of 100 friends you can email about your new side gig. Tell the first three clients you’ll teach them for free in exchange for testimonials. Promote these kick-ass testimonials everywhere you can.
Adopt a dog: Research breeds. Visit shelters. Understand the costs and commitments of owning a pet and make sure it makes sense for your lifestyle right now. Now go get one.
The above examples may seem too easy or even trivial, but the beauty of goal-setting and achievements is that once you achieve one thing, your motivation to dare do something more peaks. In fact, if you’re truly inspired, you could probably do all of this in one month (or less). It is that simple.
The purpose of any pain you experience is not to make you suffer. It’s to drive you to action
It’s amazing what happens when we reconnect and become aligned with our desires. When get clear on what we really want and remind ourselves how capable we are (the meaning of #IAmPossible), we can’t help but become motivated to take action. We become unstoppable. So if you are ending November filled with discontent, remember the purpose of any pain you experience is not to make you suffer. It’s to drive you to action.