Wishing you a beautiful start into a gorgeous 2019, I’m sharing with you three things you’ll be glad you thought about on the last day of 2018.
1 Tell me where it hurts
I like to begin the retrospective with the most painful moments.
Not because I like the pain of failure or loss, but because it’s the hardest and the most rewarding thing to do, and all the next steps are a breeze.
(You’ll need a DIN A4 piece of paper and a pen.)
Looking at all the months past, December back to January, I list all the moments that broke my heart. I write them all down in a column. Next, I live through each of them again and ask myself where it really hurt. Was it my ego or was it something more deep and genuine? Did it throw me back or did it help open up a new opportunity? What can I take away from this experience that brings me one step closer to being my true self?
I write the learnings down in a second column and I then fold the paper so I can only see them.
There surely are things you’d love to change come 2019. Maybe give up a nasty habit, maybe start cooking fresh meals or practicing yoga, or maybe you want to just generally be more energised and positive. Write all your dreams and wishes down in a cloud-like shape (so, not in a list).
When you’re done writing, look at them and look for dependencies. For example “want a bigger house” will probably be a result of “get a raise”, or “lose 5 pounds” may be the result of “eat healthy” or “exercise”.
Connect those nods with arrows like this: [raise] -> [bigger house] or [exercise] -> [lose weight]. Maybe you’ll have no such paths or much longer paths, that’s up to you entirely, but ususally, your brain will find connections, and some may look surprising to you.
The final nods now need a bit of emotional fuel.
Write down a good reason why you need to do this stuff. To stay with my examples from above, the “bigger house” might have the emotional reason of having the opportunity to finally have your friends or loved ones around more often, or maybe to have your own garden, or to have a designated space for that great hobby that starts to become a fascinating side job…, and “lose weight” might have its Why in resolving health issues.
Just make sure to find Truly Damn Good Reasons.
3 Thought Contagion
Our society works in systems. Some of them will be helpful for you in reaching your goals. Some will be detrimental.
And so, write down all the fears and the reasons why you will fail (maybe fail again since you’ve already tried to do it). Why you can’t make it. Why there’s no way. Pour it all over the paper. And then do the Reality Check.
Some things truly can’t be changed. Some things can. Differentiate between your beliefs (“I simply can’t do it”) and facts (“it’s unlikely I can grow actual wings and fly”).
Tip: have a look at the learnings column for insights.
And now — plan for a great year ahead!
The subheads are all titles of some of my all-time favourite songs.
You can listen to them here and watch the videos, all via the artists’ official YouTube channels:
Garbage, Tell Me Where It Hurts
David Bowie, Changes
Muse, Thought Contagion