Before we get into New Year’s Resolutions I want to share something with everyone.
I have been doing a ton research on leadership lately for my next book. Which means that my first book is about to launch!!!!!! I will have the printer preview in my hands by next week! Once that happens, the ebook(kindle and nook) will go live! If you are an email community member then be on the lookout for a discount for that ebook.
If you aren’t a community member now is the best time to join! I am about to send out my December Resource email. My November Resource email saw an open rate of 80% and a click rate of 73%. That means the community members saw a ton of value in that resource drop. Do yourself a favor and get some good resources by joining the community, best part there are always some free resources packed into it. Even if the Holiday season leaves you a little budget constrained, there are some actionable resources for you.
Now on to the reason, you are here, New Year’s Resolutions. Let me warn you up front this a personal journey I am going on this year. I will update you throughout the year on my progress. I will fail at certain points, but you will get to laugh, enjoy and benefit from the lessons I learn from that failure. Disclaimer: at this point in my life I write to discover the way things are. That means I am discovering this wisdom in real-time with you. I might edit my articles for grammar, but you are getting the freshest of content that I can create. For those that know me, that means content from throughout history too. I am going to pull from Gilgamesh to Brené Brown.
What inspired this article series was a recent podcast from Michael Hyatt, detailing how to accomplish any goals. While listening I found some interesting takeaways that weren’t necessarily highlighted in that podcast. The reason they weren’t highlighted was not a failure on Hyatt’s part but an interesting cross-section I had by reading a book called Didn’t See It Coming by Carey Nieuwhof.
Carey Nieuwhof’s book highlights the seven things that every leader experiences but few expect to hit them. You will get to read some great wisdom that I have gathered from that book over the series of articles.Carey Nieuwhof's book highlights the seven things that every leader experiences but few expect to hit them. #didntseeitcoming Click To Tweet
Alongside these two flashpoints, I have been collecting a great deal of wisdom on accomplishing goals, organizing your life to maximize your humanity, and live the life you want to live. The benefit of being an author is that I get to read, and read everybody because everyone has their own unique expression. You are going to get some steps on how to succeed on your New Year’s Resolutions from these wise and varied masters in their fields. So strap in, it’s going to be a bumpy and wild ride.
That’s the first step, to state your resolution. Don’t worry about necessarily how refined it is right now we are going to refine it on the Christmas week to give you the best chance to succeed right before the New Year. So challenge number one either email/text someone (could be me) your resolution or post it in the comments. – Oh you thought this a was a passive thing. As Jim Carrey’s Grinch says “Wrong-O.”
I am not joking. Stop reading this and comment or send an email or text.
Ok, so what we did there was create a tiny sense of accountability. Here’s the deal no one expects you to actually follow through on your resolution. That’s ok. Now you think you are on the hook. After all what if its February and that person sees you at a dinner party (who has parties in February after college?) and asks you about it. You want to be able to show some progress. There it is now, rattling in the back of your mind. The fear of failure, which is ok because we are going to work with that fear as an initial motivation. Something has to get us kicked off.The fear of failure, which is ok because we are going to work with that fear as an initial motivation. Click To Tweet
So here is where that is kicking us off.
If you never prepare then you are preparing to never succeed. Soak that in. Preparation is not just for Boy Scouts. Though I did get my Eagle, super nerd here. Preparation is no fun though until it becomes a habit. It can also bog you down in an endless pursuit of the perfect conditions. The conditions will never be perfect.
For example, I am going to have my second kid this year. It is a terrible year to shoot for a New Year’s Resolution of journaling. Perfect doesn’t exist or if it does it only exists for a super short amount of time. So here is what we are going to do to prepare.
We are going to actually start our New Year’s Resolution next week December 17. I started my journaling resolution on December 1. Know how many times I have journaled in the last 12 days – 3 times. That’s ok. I knew I was going to fail at
Ok, so here is what’s going on. By working out your resolution early you get to learn how it would actually fit into your life. Maybe its read the Bible in a year. Well, your life might be crazy in the morning and evening, but there are a blissful 20 minutes during lunch that you can knock out that reading. Without actually doing it for a few weeks though and experimenting you will have no idea how to fit your resolution into your life. You might think you will wake up every morning and read the Bible or journal, but that may not work for you. You might be a right before bed person (helpful hint those only work for about 20% of the population which is rare).
Ideally by forcing yourself to figure out where your resolution works in your life now means that you will know where it fits in the new year. Think about it. Is there any crazier time in your life than the holidays? If you can pull off even a tiny amount of consistency through the holidays the rest of the year will be a breeze, why? Because you prepared to do the work ahead of time.If you can pull off even a tiny amount of consistency through the holidays the rest of the year will be a breeze, why? Because you prepared to do the work ahead of time. Click To Tweet
Bonus for those of you reading the Bible or any other book: you will be at least a few chapters ahead when you start your goal. That gives you extra room to fail.
When you prepare
You see when you prepare, you build in contingencies for failure. You already know you are going to fail, so you might as well at least use that failure to actually build up some success.
Also, if your goal is unrealistic, you are going to find out fast. Again, now you can readjust your goal and actually succeed in the new year, and you won’t have wasted any time. You failed in 2018
- State your goal to someone else
- Between now and the next week, think about when your goal will fit into your schedule.
- Do some research on what makes other people successful
- Start your goal at the start of a new week (new week, new slate).
- Fail – but get that data. Why did you fail? Was it internal factors? Was it external factors? Can you plan for those factors? If so work with and around them. If not adjust the goal.
- Add automation triggers – Lay out your clothes for your morning workout. Hide the coffee under a Bible. Stick your keys in your journal. I have my laptop open my journal entry in Word when I open it.
- Add community to your experience. I cannot work out without friends there. I refuse because I have no personal motivation, but if a friend invites me I am likely to take them up on it. If a friend schedules their time to be there, then I will likely schedule my time to be there too. Journaling is more of a personal thing, but I am making it communal by talking about it here. Join a book club. Whatever you do, you have a higher chance if there is a community around you.
Take those in and notice that they begin and end with accountability. Don’t forget to add accountability to your preparation. Sometimes it takes a few weeks to find someone on the same schedule as you.
Final Thoughts and Teaser
In my experience, preparation is best done by actually doing the thing you are preparing to do. That’s why simulation is so popular. It has the feel of doing the resolution without any of the consequences of failing. That’s what I am encouraging you to do with the rest of your 2018. Simulate 2019.
The next article will talk about grief. While you may not think grief ties into this subject, you will be surprised at how much it matters.
I look forward to hearing from you.