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Step-by-step goal setting for new year

I know most people try to plan their new year and do their resolutions before the actual start of New Year, but I always do them in the beginning of January :) Of course I do start thinking when the end of the year approaches, but I find that holiday season is always too hectic, too full of things to do, people to visit and often includes a fair amount of travel (especially when you’re an expat). And my experience is that if you’re serious with your goals then you will need quality time to reflect, analyze and plan. You’ll need space and time where you could be uninterrupted and allow yourself to not only to think, but also to feel what is it that you want in life next.
As the holidays are ended hopefully things are calmer now (and the pressure of suddenly becoming perfect from 1st of January is gone, too) and I invite you to join me on this session- to peek into your dreams, allow yourself to think big and create some realistic steps to achieve what you want.

You’ll need:

 *A block of time where you’ll be uninterrupted (or you can do this with your partner or friend, that’s fine, too as long as you’re both focused on the process);

*Notebook/your journal & pen + colorful pencil/markers if you like to highlight/organize things;

*No phone/social media notifications etc.- though some ambient music could be useful;

*An open mind :)

goal setting scene

We’ll start with last year’s review to see what have happened and to decide which things should change, then we will move to the goal setting for the following year. Read the questions and allow yourself to think about it with an open mind & heart and most important- be honest with yourself. In the end it’s your life and you should be fully happy with it.

Last year’s review & lessons:
1) What worked really well this year? Why? What made you feel alive, filled with joy, enthusiasm and inspiration? How can you add more of this into your life? Can you come up with at least 20 ways to add more joy/health/happiness to your life? What would REALLY make a difference in your life? Why?
Don’t think about limitations (lack of money, time etc.) at this phase, just think what would really positively impact your life. Things you want to add to your life can be big or small, they just have to be meaningful for you. Both things like having your nails done & wearing organic perfumes daily to make you feel feminine & beautiful and starting to volunteer at local shelter to feel connected & meaningful are perfectly fine, choose what YOU need at this moment in life.
2) What were the things that didn’t work well this year? That felt draining, stuck, stressful, forced? What should you do differently to avoid repeating these mistakes?
Where did you invest time with no/poor results?
Be willing to let go of things, even if it’s scary. Letting go makes space for new & better things in your life. We rarely think of that, but life is short, so always aim for what lights you up. Most of the “shoulds” we create ourselves and we can change them.
New year planning:
For the first step, let’s get the big picture. Let’s relax and let our imagination go wild and see what feels right & what would really excite you:

Imagine it’s the end of 2016. In one year, where do you want to be? What matters to you? Imagine that you thought really big this year and everything went according to your wishes- where would you be in one year? WHO would you be? Allow yourself to think and dream without limitations, I can tell you that since I started doing this few years ago most of the things came true, though they seemed wildly unbelievable in the beginning :)

Now when we have a bigger vision let’s move to more details. These questions were designed to get you more clarity in various areas of your life:

 How do I want to improve? What books to read, courses to take, seminars/retreats to attend? What skills to gain? What mentors/coaches to hire? What habits to change/add?
What do I want to achieve in my career? How do I want to help & impact people? How much do I want to earn- monthly, yearly? Where do I want my income to come from (what type of work and clients)? What would I consider a “success” (not by society norms, but what would make YOU happy/proud/excited)?
How do I want to spend my freetime? What places to visit, things to see and experience? With whom I want to spend my time and how?
What are my health & wellbeing goals? What habits do I want to quit or add? What would make the biggest impact? What would feel right? What do you know deep there that you deserve, but don’t commit to?

How do I want my relationships to be? With my partner/family/friends? How do I want to feel & make others feel? Who is really important to me? How can I show them this?

Who can I help? How can I give? My time/resources/love/skills? What change do I want to see in the world and what can I personally do to achieve it?

Now go again through each category and ask this– what should I do to achieve this- daily, weekly, monthly? If that’s helpful, put specific things on the calendar (use Google calendar if you don’t have real one) Don’t underestimate small, incremental steps- this is what brings you closer to your goals, day by day. And just start doing them- order or take form the library the book you want to read next month, plan the gathering with friends you want to see but haven’t seen for months, put the blocks of time in your calendar for new habit you want to take. Or make a donation of old clothes to those who need it, or book a ticket to the conference you want to attend- you get the point :)…

I know it’s a pretty big exercise- if you feel it’s too overwhelming you can do it in parts- last year review, big vision and then different areas of live- this is how I personally did it, but then again I’m just really used to write A LOT and analyze all things in my life on paper, so that would be a huge exercise for me to finish in one go. The whole thing of dreaming & planning your life can feel strange at the beginning, but from my experience it brings so much growth, clarity and new possibilities to your life. Suddenly you’re not just blindly doing anything, trying to keep up with urgent (but not necessarily important to you) tasks of the day- now you have a direction and YOUR goals to make your life the way you want. With this and continuous everyday actions everything is possible :)

I hope this was helpful to you and I would love to hear from you at least one of your goals for next year in the comments bellow! :)

With love & inspiration,
Lina

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