YAH it’s 2016 … we’ve clicked over into a new year and here we go again with New Year resolutions, especially the ‘eat healthier, exercise more, drink less’ type. You too? Of course we all want to do that in January … because we did the opposite of that in December and there’s only so much over-indulgence and physical neglect our bodies can take, right?
So, what about your other 2016 plans and goals? How are you planning to make this year ‘your best year yet’? Did you write out a list over the holiday period? … Perhaps compile a vision board of all the things you want to achieve? … Been researching options on how to do it from other people’s suggestions? Are you a quick fix junkie?
Well, there’s no shortage of suggestions out there; social media is chockers with them! At this time of year, there is a massive bombardment of articles, blogs, and webinars on ‘how to have the most awesome 2016.’ It’s like all the budding would-be writers, coaches, mentors and ‘anyone who’s some-one’ has decided to use the holiday break to publish their little piece of ‘how to’ advice to the world … and apparently we are all floundering for a quick fix, numbered check-list solution.
You know … like how to get there in 3 – 5 – 10 steps, and I even saw several 100 steps versions, for those who want to ‘operate with blistering speed, hyper-accountability, and relentless execution’. Geez, I wonder how you would feel on day 101? … overwhelmed and exhausted?
In case you haven’t been hit in the face every time you check your Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter feeds, here are just a few examples:
While all this may be an interesting read [if you have nothing better to do over the holidays], they can also leave you feeling like it’s impossible be successful, or like you won’t have an awesome year unless you tick off all the steps, or like you will never be able to achieve all that … which can send you down a negative spiral of fearing that you are ‘not good enough’. Be careful what message you take from these … they are simply someone’s opinion from their experience [at best - hopefully genuine], or just a competing marketing exercise on the number of ‘hits’ they get [at worst].
Yes, I’m a bit over all that in-your-face prescriptive advice; hardly surprising as rigid rules set by someone else has never really been something I’ve subscribed to. So … I’m NOT going to give you my top 5 tips or my 3 key points on how to live your life in 2016. The last thing you need is another ‘how to’ list.
Instead … I’m sharing with you my ONE BIG LEARNING [OBL] during 2015 … and,
my ONE BIG TIP [OBT] for you this New Year …. and it is simply this:
OBL: BE YOU … Be uniquely you, be different from the rest.
Be true to your values, know your self-worth, and embrace your authentic, unique self.
Not everyone will ‘get you’ or like you, but not everyone matters. Connect with those who matter, surround yourself with those who believe what you believe and want to lift you higher. Love and be proud of who you are.
I love the person I have become, because I have fought really damn hard over many years to become ME … to find out WHO I am, WHY I’m here, and create a pathway where I can choose to do more of WHAT I love, and I know WHY I do what I do.
OBT: FOCUS ON YOUR WHY … Get clear on your purpose.
Trust your gut … Every time I listen and act on my gut feel, I make good decisions and enjoy successful outcomes. Every time I don’t, results are disappointing and I kick myself for not listening to my strong inner voice. Learn to trust your gut feel = ‘feeling what is right’.
Know your why … Become totally self-aware and focused on your WHY - your purpose in life. Identify and understand what inspires you to be who you are and to do what you do. Then put it into words – a sentence or short paragraph that easily roles off your tongue. When you do that, and can clearly articulate your WHY, stuff will either be a good fit for you, or not … decisions about that become so much easier. Being clear on your WHY = ‘knowing what is right’.
Getting clear on your WHY: You won’t find your WHY from focusing on what you want to achieve in the future, or figuring out a strategy [or stepped process] to get there. Your WHY doesn’t come from looking ahead … it comes from looking within. It’s a process of discovery from personal experience, not an invention … it is born out of your own beliefs and past life experiences.
Start by identifying the things that you are passionate about; what drives you, energises you, floats your boat, and reflect on WHY that is. Sometimes we get so caught up in all the ‘what we’re meant to’ and ‘how to’ noise, competition and advice, that our own WHY becomes fuzzy.
I believe there is no greater personal asset than to possess a strong inner strength and belief in your own abilities to make good decisions, driven by a clear sense of purpose; … therefore, my one big tip for your big daring list of 2016 goals is … get clear on your WHY.
Each year is simply another chapter in your life … one year doesn’t have to be better or more awesome than the next … it all forms part of your story and the learnings along the way help to make you who you are … a unique individual with a strong purpose.
I wish that for you, for 2016 and beyond.
PS: One more thing … if you are going to read any self-help articles or books, may I suggest you read: 'Start with WHY' … by Simon Sinek.
NOTE: I have paraphrased some of Simon Sineks words in this blog. WHY? Because his WHY fits well with my WHY. More on that in upcoming blogs …
Happy New Year,
Be a game changer :)