Picking a Theme for Your Year
Each time we approach January, there’s pressure to set New Year’s resolutions. Most are around changing habits and work-related ones could include: I will go networking every month, I will take lunch breaks every day, I will declutter my workspace, etc. For most of us, there’s more than one habit we want to address. Unfortunately, resolutions require us to make the changes using willpower and it’s not long before we’ve fallen off track and back into our old habits.
This year, instead of trying to ‘will’ yourself to do something, how about picking a word or two which become your theme for the year? Something that relates to your values, what you want to achieve and becomes a compass to make sure you’re moving in the right direction.
Language is hugely important and is the architecture of how we communicate both internally and externally. Our choice of words impacts our life and how effective we are within it. In my work as a practitioner, teaching clients to use language to support their health and life is key to helping them making great changes.
A theme will assist you to create the type of year you want. It will help you make the right choices for you and your business.
Start with last year
Ask yourself these questions to identify the patterns of the past year. They will help you understand what you want to change or replicate in the future.
- What went well last year?
- Was there anything missing?
- What did I love about last year and want to continue?
Imagine the year ahead
Close your eyes and think about where you want to be at the end of the year.
- What do you want to have achieved in your practice?
- What do you need to do in order to create that?
- Who do you need to be, to create the business of your dreams?
- What are the most important things to you?
- What are the values you want to live by?
Finding words to inspire you
Now you know where you want to move towards, what words describe how you need to be in order to achieve what you want? What qualities will help to guide you through the year ahead and make sure you’re on track? What is the wisest way for you to operate?
Close your eyes and make a note of the words that come to mind. From them, select the two or three that most clearly articulate how you want to feel in order to achieve your goals.
As an example, my themes are:
Connection – both personally and professionally. I want to make time to connect with family, friends, colleagues, clients and associates both in person and online and strengthen the relationships we have.
Imperfect action – I have some big projects coming up which are important to me. I want to make sure I achieve them to the best of my ability without allowing my ‘inner perfectionist’ to sabotage them.
Create your compass
Take your themes and write them down. You want to create a reminder where you will see them regularly. They can be a screen saver, a piece of artwork, reminders on your phone. I have my words on post-it-notes next to my desk as a constant reminder.
Now each time you have a decision to make, ensure it fits with your theme. By using them as your guide, you will make choices that fit with your values, who you want to be and what you want to achieve.
Bonus – use your theme to get your to-do list down to a manageable size. Cross everything off that doesn’t fit with it.
If you want to stay on track with your business this year, contact me for a chat to find out how I can help you.
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