Reach Your New Year’s goals, any time of year
Each time we gear up for the New Year many of us pledge to bring lasting change to our lives. Some of us want to get fit, grow our businesses, or create more stability in our lives, whether through finding a job or improving relationships.
New Years’ resolutions — or goal-setting any time of year — can become overwhelming when only the ultimate goal is envisioned. No resolution worth making is achieved by a great overnight leap to success.
Reaching our New Year’s objectives becomes easier to imagine and accomplish by focusing on chipping away a bit each day.
In addition to setting and acting on short-term goals, using intuition to guide us, and being grateful for what we already have, makes achieving resolutions easier.
Here are daily tips to remind us of our goals, create action items, elicit creative problem solving, and build positive thinking.
Create a pep statement
Write down a particular goal that you’d like to accomplish this year. For instance, if your long-term goal is to lose 10 pounds and tone your body through exercise, then write a pep statement. Also known as an affirmation, the pep statement is a believable, positive present-tense sentence that helps you feel your goal on an emotional level. Positive feelings help energize you and keep you on your path.
Here are sample pep statements. Say them aloud each day so that you feel them in your body and mind.
“I feel so inspired when I work toward regularly meditating that I feel more energetic and creative.”
“I feel so alive when I imagine exercising that I enjoy working towards getting fit.”
The pep statement draws from the work of Michael Losier, author of “Law of Attraction.”
Pick action items that will help you achieve your long-term goals. Examples are below.
If you are working toward integrating meditation into your life, find time when you are alone to practice a technique. You can use simple actions as opportunities to meditate, including walking to your car, using the restroom, or doing errands. At the end of this article is a meditation technique you might want to try.
If you are focusing on getting fit, increase your physical activity by adding additional movement into your routine. For instance, take the stairs instead of the elevator, park your car 1/2 mile from your office and walk to work, or take a 10-minute walk break instead of a coffee break. For more ideas, visit the American Heart Association website.
Intuition is your internal guidance system that helps you steer through the process of change and make real-time decisions. It is your innate wisdom that pops up seemingly from nowhere and flows when you are in a relaxed, receptive state.
If you feel stuck while working on your New Year’s goals, take some quiet time through meditation, reflection or prayer. Also, pay attention to your dreams, which may provide creative solutions.
Below is the meditation practice “Getting Your Feet on the Ground,” which quiets the analytical mind and creates awareness of the subtle messages your intuition is sending. In addition, when practiced regularly, meditation can help produce a neutral perspective so that your current situation is viewed as a stepping stone rather than a block towards personal development.
Say aloud or silently those things for which you are grateful in your life. This will help you to cultivate a positive mind set.
Sample items for which you might be grateful include people in your life who support and love you, a job that pays the bills, or a place to live.
Having a vision of where to you want to go, a series of action items, the recognition that your intuition is guiding you, and an attitude of gratitude will help keep you on your path to achieving your New Year’s goals.
Meditation Technique: Getting Your Feet on the Ground
Clears mind chatter; creates a state of body and mind that is receptive to intuition.
Find some time to be alone. Whether sitting, standing, or walking, focus your awareness on your feet, feeling your feet on the ground. If your awareness drifts away, bring it back to feeling your feet on the ground.
Do this quietly for 5 or more minutes. Upon completion, notice how you feel and if you have a different perspective on an issue for which you have concern.
Center for Disease Control, National Activity Plan.
Losier, M. J. (2003). Law of attraction. New York: Hachette Book Group.
Zimmerman GL, Olsen CG, Bosworth MF. (2000). “A 'Stages of Change' approach to helping patients change behavior.” American Family Physcian, 61:1409-16.