My association with M&S runs back to the launch of…
It’s February 2018 already!!
As I was reviewing my January 2018 – something that I do at the end of every month (and a habit that I developed over the past few years), I realised that I had fared absolutely well and was more in control than ever before with not only setting goals or tackling tasks but also in accomplishing them. Now this isn’t a feat that has been an overnight achievement but is instead a result of months and years of looking up on the habits and tricks of the successful, trying out different methods, exercises, techniques that I picked up from books and off the net and of course learning by personal experiences while at it.
I am often asked by both my friends and readers how I manage to do so much – blogging, freelance styling/consultancy, managing a salon and now YouTube!!, and honestly as overwhelming as it all is it’s not half as bad when you’ve got it all planned out. I thus at the end of my January review and going by the majority opinion on Instagram poll, was prompted to put together this list of 7 points that I’ve picked up and personally practise – practical and to the point – to help you ace your game this 2018.
Because, hey, it’s never too late!
1. A year is only as good as a day – 365 days over
365 days and each one comes with a choice. It’s important to first understand that a year is eventually a sum total of every single day and how you choose to spend it. So before you set out to try and make the year count, accept that it’s all about taking on one day at a time and doing your best when at it. I find this deeply overpowering because as soon as you realise the gravity of this fact, you realise that YOU have the power to shape the year ahead the way you want to by wisely spending every 24hrs that you’ve got at hand. Also it’s a little less daunting to focus on the 24hrs ahead than a cumulative 365 days!
2. Set your goals – in black and white (and some color!)
Before you set your ‘resolutions’, ask yourself what is your definition of success or what are your expectations from the year and have an absolutely clear idea about what you want to achieve. Then go ahead and write it all down in a place that’s easily accessible or better still always in your vision. Yes, mental notes don’t hold the test of time and will soon be forgotten. Besides, writing down in ink what you are setting out to expect from the year not only helps you in thinking concretely and being rather defined about were you are headed but also helps you to instantly connect with your intentions. Be as precise as you can when it comes to making this list and fill out every single small detail of what you want to achieve with absolute accuracy. I cannot stress enough on the importance of this. It’s almost like the foundation or the building block – the more you work on this, the stronger you will find yourself both emotionally and mentally in the coming months.
3. Break it down – work on an action plan!
Now that you have your broad goals for the year set, it’s time to break it all down. One of the main reasons that most people often don’t meet their yearly plans or goals is because they don’t set weekly/monthly targets to achieve that goal. And let’s face it, it can be unnerving to have a huge goal set and be almost halfway through the year to realise you’re nowhere close to where you should have ideally been. Instead breaking down every big goal into smaller targets with a weekly or monthly deadline will not only increase your productivity and give you a sense of direction but also curb the onset of laziness and procrastination – the evil monster that leaves all of us rueful. So simply put – narrow down your big goals into smaller to-achieve monthly tasks that can be further broken down to weekly to-do lists. P.s – Buy a good planner, it helps and make this all more fun!
4. Review and revise – be honest and flexible
This is something that I started only recently and I cannot tell you the big difference it’s made to my life and to my approach towards yearly goals. It important to sit back and review your progress or the lack of it after a month (or even a week if that works for you!) and take into consideration all that’s working and all that’s not. Be honest to yourself and if you think you could do better, be flexible to change your way to approach the same goal in an absolutely different way. It’s better to switch the road and get to your destination than to regretfully give up on it all together.
5. Be accountable – it starts and ends with you
One of big shifts in my thought process set in when I early discovered how I alone am wholly accountable and responsible for the way my life turns out and how no situation or person can ever be held responsible for my failure. Now this is one of the most difficult facts to accept as there’s nothing easier than blaming someone or something for when things don’t turn out your way. But when you have that privilege taken away from you, you are immediately compelled to be more responsible with your time and actions and to obviously work a lot more harder. So take ownership for where you are right now and start working knowing that you alone can get to where you eventually want to.
6. Reward yourself – you know you’ve worked for it
It’s no mean task to stay focussed and meet your expectations day after day and week after week and month after month. While the emotional drive you experience when you meet a goal is rewarding in itself, treat yourself when you meet a timeline because you deserve it. And let’s not forget you are now closer to your BIG BOLD GOAL. Be it a weekend off, a holiday, a spa session, some mindless shopping or even doing nothing at all for a while – do what makes you happy.
7. Change your outlook – the way you feel and think
While setting goals and targets and meeting them all is all is more doable, the most important and often challenging task is to develop the right attitude towards this all. I have and still often struggle with maintaining the fine line of difference between being optimistic, realistic and pessimistic. However, it’s amazing to know how much more you can get out of your day if you just change the way you are mechanically wired to think and feel. Try and get a grip over the way you allow yourself to feel and to think and you will find that your response to the same old hurdles is now different, leading you to reach heights that you’ve never scaled to before. Also, be in touch with your emotions. Face your fears, lows and even disappointments instead of running away from them – they often give you more strength than you think to move forward.
So these are the Top 7 points I could narrow my experiences and practises down to! I really hope this inspires and helps you to get out and do more with your day. Also, do comment and let me know if you’d like me to work on more articles of these nature as it’s the first time I’ve penned something like this for the blog.