Here we are just 10 days from the end of the year! It’s hard to believe that 2015 is already coming to a close. While I often lament that another year has passed and another birthday is just around the corner (hello January baby!), I am also always very excited at the prospect of a new year and a clean slate. As you know, I’m addicted to planners and journals and this year I have asked for a planner for Christmas. I have dropped a few hints so it will be a fun surprise to open one on Christmas morning and revel in the joy of the blank page with dates full of opportunity and promise just waiting to be filled.
This year as always, I will write down my resolutions for the year with enthusiasm. Some of these goals will come to fruition and others will not. I have recently read some articles denouncing New Year’s resolutions, citing the statistics of how many people actually keep their resolutions (only about 8% of people are successful), and encouraging people to give up on resolutions. But statistics also show that “people who explicitly make resolutions are 10 times more likely to attain their goals than people who don’t explicitly make resolutions.” What have you got to lose?! If you don’t buy a lottery ticket, your chances of winning are zero. If you don’t make a goal, your chances of achieving that goal are, you got it, zero again.Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss you'll land among the stars. Click To Tweet
Motivation to Stay on Track
Last year I had success keeping some of my resolutions. I got in shape for our state tennis tournament in May and I finished my masters degree. I’m going to share with you 5 easy things I did to help me stay motivated.
Write down your goals
Last year I used Sage Grayson’s Life Editing planner and wrote down all my goals. This is a crucial step! Dr. Gail Matthews, a psychology professor at Dominican University in California, did a study on goal-setting. The results showed that people who write down their goals are 42 percent more likely to achieve them. Writing down your goals makes them real. It forces you to focus and figure out what you really want and when life becomes difficult these written goals will be a reminder of why you need to keep going. They give you a destination and the ability to map out a path to get there. Without writing your goals down, you are just drifting through life wondering why you aren’t successful.
Make a plan
We’ve already talked about making a plan for happiness in 2016. Whatever your goals are for the coming year, make a plan to achieve them. I have found in the past that if I don’t make a specific plan, the year flies by and before I know it, I’m right back where I was in January. Has this happened to you and you wonder where the time went?
After writing down your goal, break it down into the small steps you will need to take action and move towards your dream. Give these steps a schedule and a deadline. For example, if you want to write a book next year, give yourself a word count per day or per week. Set up a specific time to write and stick to it. (Here I’m going to try and take my own advice! LOL!) Your plan can change as challenges or opportunities arrive, but start the year out with a road map and take detours as needed.
Get a motivational buddy
This really can make a world of difference. I went through the masters program with two dear friends and we motivated, cheered, coaxed, cried, complained, celebrated, whined, encouraged and pulled each other through the entire program. I could not have done it without our little mastermind/support group. Find someone you trust and share your dreams with them. Ask a friend or spouse to be your cheerleader and it will give you the added motivation of not wanting to let them down. Articulating our goals out loud to someone can be a powerful way to inspire you to action.
Read to be inspired
I love to read motivational books and stories of inspiration. Reading allows you to live through another person’s struggles and triumphs and learn from their courage. You see how they overcame adversity, found opportunities, and fulfilled their dreams. Books by motivational experts like Jack Canfield, Michael Hyatt, and Tony Robbins can give you step by step instructions and inspiration on how to reach your goals. Here are a few of my personal favorites:
Ten Things I Learned from Bill Porter by Shelly Brady
The Success Principles by Jack Canfield
How to Be Like Walt: Capturing the Disney Magic Every Day of Your Life by Pat Williams
Getting a Grip by Monica Seles
The Fear Project by Jaimal Yogis
Give yourself small constant doses of inspiration
This one is my favorite! I love inspirational quotes and I like to plaster them where I can see them on a daily basis. The photo at the top of the post is what I look at when I’m working in my studio. I found the Ready to Sparkle? and I don’t over-think it. I just do it! quotes in magazines and cut them out. The Thoreau quote on dreams I made in PhotoShop for a screen saver and I printed it out (see the FREE printable below!).
You can write your favorite inspirational quotes on sticky notes for the bathroom mirror or make a vision board to put on your bedroom closet or refrigerator door. Danielle LaPorte has a great app called #Truthbomb that will show you a little inspirational blurb each day on your phone. She’s giving it away free until December 27th at this link. I just downloaded it today.
Also, starting in the new year, my awesome colleague Dawn Tolbert will be hosting a weekly “Tap Into Happiness” prompt. These prompts and questions will be posted on Mondays and are meant to get you thinking and journaling on your journey to a happier you. Keep a look out for those in January! All these little reminders will help keep you motivated throughout the year.
I’m so happy to be able to share my Thoreau quote on dreams with you! This can be printed as a 5×7 image or used as a screen saver. Print this out and tape it up where you can see it every day or make it your screen saver and then “Go confidently in the direction of your dreams!”
Get your free printable (right click on the image and save to your computer for printing)
Have you written down your goals for 2016 yet? If you have, I would love to hear what you have planned for next year. If you have any tips and tricks that you use to stay motivated and focused on your goals, we’d love to hear them in the comments below. You may help someone reach their dreams this coming year!
Here is a picture of my post writing helpers for today – Waggles, Summer, and Baxter. We all wish you a Merry Christmas!!