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Reflection and Intention

When it gets to a new year are you that person that actually waits till the clock turns to midnight on new years eve before starting something new?

Someone said to me the week before new years that ‘next year’ they wanted to start being healthier and get fitter. So I asked them why are they not starting then and there, why wait another week? Mmmmmm, they thought about it and said – there are too many festivities to be healthy this time of year.

So why not start then and there by taking a walk around the block for a tad of exercise or get a bike out and enjoy nature?

I agree, it’s a tough time of year. From this I would love you to hear your inner chatter throughout 2019 next time you set yourself an intention. I’m a fan of not scheduling a time to start in the future, although starting when you consider this an action for yourself. For instance, why do we always start on Monday? Why not any day? Why if we fall off the wagon do you then say to yourself, I’ll pick up again next week/month?

Some people constantly put off starting something, perhaps it’s new, they are unsure where to start, they don’t think they deserve it, the belief and conviction isn’t there, it’s too hard, they see so many hurdles before they can even consider this doable. Maybe the finances are stopping them or they simply are zapped of all their energy and push it aside till later, and later rarely comes. Most of it is all excuses you do realise right?

Here are a couple of tips to get you started.

New Year : New Beginning

Reflection – take a moment to reflect on 2018 and physically write down all the small, medium and any big wins you had last year. When was the last time you actually took the opportunity to remember all the great things you have done? This can help with confidence as it helps you see what you have conquered no matter how small. A year is a long time, so take a good 30 – 60 minutes to do this.

What it also does is gives you an opportunity to pause and help you understand what it took to get you where you are today. You may have had some hurdles to jump through or may have been smooth sailing. The challenges are what makes you more resilient next time as you can gain growth from seeing how you managed yourself through the hardship. You may even redirect the goal if need be from understanding the energy it took to achieve all these things no matter how minuscule or monstrous they may be.

Discover your values – before we can set any meaningful goal we need to identify who we are. What is it we want to be, what is our make up? Aligning your values to be a true reflection of ones self is the first step in setting meaningful goals. If it’s someone else’s goal for you, you are less inclined to achieve it (well you may although not be satisfied if it’s not a true picture of you) Do you know your values?

Once you know what you stand for it can be easier to identify where you want to be heading. Certain career direction, playing a team sport, being part of the community, committing to something new, moving locations, challenging yourself professionally or personally. Ponder the thoughts of what it is that excites you to move more into the direction of where you want to go that is in line with your values.

Take the plunge – great to have the intentions, now you need a plan. To start write yourself the first step of what you need to do to get moving. Could be as little as some research on the internet to get more information. Then continue the steps to fulfil the plan. The second step might be a little harder, registering, making that call or talking to the people in your life. Go on, I dare you too!

Having a plan that has flexibility is also key. When you are so stringent on a one-way tunnel to achieving something, you can sometimes loose sight of other opportunities that may give you a flourishing opportunity too. Have your plan but don’t be blindsided and miss any opportunities that may seek growth along the way.

Re-prioritise – I constantly hear, I don’t have time! Is this you? Then maybe you need to re-focus where your energy goes. If you want something enough you may need to make sacrifices. Perhaps missing some social engagements, missing the kiddies ceremony at school, not being there at everyone else’s beck and call. Financially giving up some luxuries to support a greater cause – yourself. Freezing your credit card to limit your spending.

When we do so much for everyone else before putting yourself, they start to loose our value. It you don’t deem yourself important, they will take your time & energy. Remember it’s ok to put first at times. People will get used to it.

Let’s face it, we all have plenty of time really. We are awake for about 16-17 hours a day. How do you use your time?

Some usually fill it scrolling through social media, looking at our screens wasting time, pointless activities for others or even yourself. It’s a choice where and how we spend our time. Someone once said to me ‘how do you find time to do XXX’ I told them ‘You choose to spend your time here and I choose to spend my time productively this way’. Neither are right or wrong, just right for both of us in our own way.

Remember this is your journey in life, when we are prioritising try not to think of anyone else’s circumstances. What they have, what you don’t or vice versa. This is about you.

Your why - this is where we want to identify the motivation behind it? Why is it that you want the things you want? Is it for status, to challenge yourself, to gain growth, more money, financial freedom, material things or to simply live longer and feel better by having a healthy state of mind? Is it so people think a certain way of you?

Separate what you want for yourself v’s what others expect of you as well to ensure you are doing this for the right reasons.

Commitment – There will be a day when you say to yourself: This is too hard; I’m useless; I’m no good at this; I can’t do this; Why did I commit to this; I don’t have time; What am I doing this for; This is too hard.

This is when I think about visualisation. It’s easy to lose sight of the big picture when you are bogged down in the negative head tapes circling in your mind. It’s crucial at this stage to be prepared for these moments and to bring back to the finish line the reason, purpose and desire of why you wanted this in the first place. To recommit to one’s self, always have a visual of the end result. What does it look like, what does it feel like and drive yourself to your outcome.

So, now is time to grab a pen and paper and start mapping out your intentions for 2019 and then set yourself tangible steps to get there.

Positive self-talk is crucial in creating the believe that you can, will and want to achieve what you set out to do. I personally love having a mantra for the tough moments to push me through and have a strategy to be prepared for any self-doubt that may arise.

‘Whether you think you can,

or think you can’t

you’re right.’

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