Every year counts, and if you want to make your next 360+ days as fruitful as possible, don’t just make plans and then shelve them as the days pass by. Here’s a step-by-step guide to becoming the master of your destiny and securing the future.
First, take stock
Before diving in to what you want to achieve in 2018, spend some time reviewing all that’s happened in 2017. What were the highlights and areas where you could improve on?
By all means, give yourself a pat on the shoulder for the good work put in. You’ve earned it. But be honest with yourself too and identify the rough moments that you won’t want to face again. This self-assessment is an opportunity to seek out new goals and revisit those which weren’t completed during the course of 2017.
Set realistic goals
Aiming to be a millionaire in 10 years’ time sounds like a plan, but cut that period down to one year and you’re just piling on unnecessary pressure.
By the same token, expecting to climb a mountain without first conquering the hills is a huge feat that may prove to be too daunting.
So before you even put any plan into action, consider your approach and timing. It’s perfectly fine to dream big and have lofty ambitions, but there’s nothing wrong with taking baby steps first. Remember, a little perspective goes a long way. You will get to the finish line.
Write them down
It’s not uncommon to come up with ideas and plans at the most random moments, like in the shower or during breakfast. But these sudden bursts of inspiration often disappear just as quick, leaving you stumped and struggling to regain those memories.
To prevent them from becoming lost in a sea of other thoughts, write down your goals as soon as you can. Putting pen to paper gives you a point of reference and helps you keep the end in sight. Flesh out as many details as possible, including the time-frame, specific objectives and which area of your life the goals fall within (work, finances, health etc).
Remember that friend who sets resolutions but never fulfills them? It’s a textbook example of how complacency and a lack of discipline can creep in, thwart everything and put you back at the starting point.
So throw caution to the wind and be fearless in your pursuits. Chase after your dreams continuously. Hell, think about them everyday if you can. Obsessing over your best life yet will move you closer to it. Even if you fail, you would’ve made significant progress and won’t end up at square one.
Go above and beyond
Why stop at one year when you can plan for five, or even 10? Having longer term goals will give you added incentive to conquer them, provide an unparalleled sense of satisfaction and pave the way for better years to come. So go ahead and forecast your life in the next decade — you’ll be glad you did!