Top 10 Tips for Planning a Successful 2015

Image from 2regularguys.com

Image from 2regularguys.com

“A goal without a plan is just a wish.”
~ Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

“It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations, if you live near him.”
~ J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit

 

Well here we are, in the opening pages of a fresh new year. As some of you will already know, I’ve allocated this week for my own personal planning summit. I’ve always found that a little bit of planning goes a long way towards helping me achieve my dreams and round out my year in a fulfilling way.

So, what do you need to do to make this next year really count?
Most people start the year strong, and then slacken off, so here are my top ten tips for planning a year brimful of wins!
1. Start 2015 by ditching New Year’s Resolutions, and choose a Power Word instead. A power word is a word to focus your intentions and energies, so that it informs and advises everything you do. This year my word is BUILD. Don’t have a power word of your own yet? Go here to get that power word sorted. Want to make it even more powerful? Do my power word meditation.
2. Goals for the year? Only pick one or two important things, and develop habits around these things so that it changes your life. Break your goal down into small actionable steps – daily tasks and weekly tasks, all incorporated as part of your new routine.
3. Three MITs for each day. An MIT is a Most Important Task. Each day, right from the word go, know what your three most important activities will be. Then get them done! Prioritize them to get done first in your day – then, no matter what else happens, you’ll know that you’ve got your MITs out of the way.
4. Schedule time for maintenance or delegate it out. We often forget to allocate time to the things that keep the show on the road. It could be household maintenance; cooking, cleaning, yard care, decluttering. It could be personal maintenance; trips to the dentist, getting your hair done, buying clothes, having that massage or back adjustment. It might be relationship maintenance; time with your partner, time to hang out with friends, time for family or pets. When we don’t make time for maintenance or plan for someone else to do it, we pile pressure upon ourselves because we have the expectation that we’ll get EVERYTHING done in our ‘free time’, and seriously, who ever gets much of that? (Also, if you jam free time full of jobs, it defeats the purpose of ‘free’ time.)
5. Surround yourself with great people. Get yourself a team. Your team might be coaches, advisers, staff, contractors, books, courses, online groups or friends who uplift you. It might be the babysitter, the accountant, the writing group, the yoga instructor, the super-knowledgeable guy at the health-food store. Success is so much easier when we have support. Ditch the negative people and people who bring you down. They were never going to be helpful anyway.
6. Focus. Let go of whatever is unimportant. If there’s something you really want to get done this year, put that thing ahead of everything else. Build your self-confidence by keeping that promise to yourself. Develop a track record in consistency. Every overnight success I ever met was a long time in the making, and got there through focus and consistency!
7. Remind yourself of your power word and review your goals daily. It only takes a minute, but keeping your goals uppermost in your mind will help revolutionise your choices and priorities. When you need to take action or make a decision, check in with your power word and goals. Then ask yourself if that decision or action moves you closer to or further away from your goals and power word.  Have a mini-planning review each month to keep yourself focused and organised.
8. Schedule regular R and R. Rest and Recreation. Total and complete days off. You. Your family. Unplugged. Birthdays and celebrations. Holidays. They all need to go into your calendar FIRST before your year fills up. It’s about quality of life. Right?
9. Know your starting point. Do a Year In Review for 2014. Look at what worked and what didn’t. Know what you own, and what you owe. Know your expected expenses. Know where your money came from. Look at what paid off, and what didn’t. Learn from your existing track record of successes and failures. Write it all down. That way, at the end of 2015, you’ll be able to see just how far you’ve come.
10. Slow down. Breathe deeply. Practice kindness and gratitude. Repeat. 🙂
2015 can be a real game changer for you, so dream big and give it your all.
Bless xx
Image from lifehack.org

Image from lifehack.org

Direction or Destination?

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Image from picture.4ever.eu

“A ship is safe in harbor, but that’s not what ships are for.” ~ William G.T. Shedd

 

Right now is a terrific time for planning.

2015 is almost upon us, and as the Captain of our own ship we get to choose where we will sail next year.

Some of you might already have a specific destination in mind.

Terrific. Beautiful. Wonderful. When you have a destination decided you can pull out your maps and chart the best course to take you there.

But what if you can’t decide on a destination?

Often, if we choose a direction, the destination will reveal itself. And that destination may be one we would have never thought of for ourselves. Yet fate will lend us a wind that drives our boat towards a new harbour, or we’ll meet a sailor in another port who urges us on to a place he’s recently visited that he’s sure will suit us, or an event will catch our eye, or a smile will capture our heart.

Direction can be enough. A broad idea of where we’re going.

We’ll head north.

We’ll go back to school.

We’ll work to get our debt down.

We’ll concentrate on improving our health.

Once we have a general direction we can choose a few specific small goals based upon that direction.

We’ll develop momentum. Our sails will fill and we’ll be on our way. Direction decided, ultimate destination as yet unknown. A grand adventure!

Sailing Adventure by Beth Marcil

Sailing Adventure by Beth Marcil

But what if your boat isn’t seaworthy?

Two choices here. You can stay in harbour and work to get that boat back in shape for your next voyage. Which might be later in the year, or even the year after that. You might also choose to sail on a river or a lake closer to home, and just cruise for the scenery, or the memories. If something goes wrong you’ll be close to shore and to help.

The other thing you can do is go sailing in your imagination, your meditations, your dreams. Just because the boat is broken, or trapped somehow, doesn’t mean you can’t captain your mind and use that for your next adventure.

I dare you to dream a little for 2015. Think about destinations and directions. Choose a course, get your ship ready, and then set sail…