When I think about looking at the upcoming year, I have found the practice of reflecting upon good and beautiful things that I have seen in the past and present sets the stage for what lies ahead in a profound way. Think about some of the most gratifying times in your life.
Reasons to Smile More
What are the moments that brought a smile of satisfaction to your face? If you’re like me, the reasons for such times vary, and include:
- Experiencing fulfillment in the role you find yourself in, whether that be in your family, career, ministry, or community.
- Seeing a dream, objective, or project, no matter how large or small, become a reality and the validation of your and even your team’s hard work and investment.
- Strengthening of your relationships, where you and those whom you are in community with are mutually encouraged and even challenged too, in a way that helps us all become better versions of ourselves.
- Finding moments of rest and reflection that help us slow down enough to realize and express gratitude for my many blessings
- Helping someone see their intrinsic value and coming alongside them to develop their strengths and help them navigate their weaknesses
I believe that reflecting upon these things, helps us face the year ahead with an optimistic realism that can be a significant motivator that helps us not grow weary in doing the good things that we are called to.
“And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.” (c.f. Galatians 6:9)
Approaches to the Year Ahead
As I consider the coming year, I realize that for most of us, there are two likely approaches to what the year ahead may hold.
- Take each day as it comes and react to the ups and downs that come our way and hope for the best.
- Plan and prioritize what you want to accomplish and for whom you want to become. As the year unfolds, take daily, proactive action toward your clearly defined goals for the year.
As we look at the two options above, it is interesting to note: Both approaches will take you to the end of the year. Time marches quickly on. And the main difference between option one and option two is planning. Even if this year produces several challenges for you, if you’re like me, you’ll smile more if you approach the year with intention and planning.
Goal setting is a foundational step in planning ahead for your year. And here are five tips to help you set and accomplish more meaningful goals for your life – and smile more this year!
5 Tips to Smile More
Ask “Why” as well as “What.”
Most of us must ask ourselves questions to figure out what’s essential and what isn’t.“Successful people ask better questions, and as a result, they get better answers.” – Anthony Robbins Click To Tweet
Asking and understanding “Why is this important to me?” will give you the emotional and motivational energy to keep moving forward when you struggle in the middle of a goal this year.
Asking the right questions will help you define what is vital in your life and ultimately help you implement the systems that will allow you to reach your goals.
Remember, you will lose your way when you lose your why.
Make a “To-Be” list as well as a “To-Do” list
As you prepare your goals, plan to live your life with a “to-be” list as well as a “to-do” list.
Who you are becoming is important because it will drive what you do.
Ultimately your values and who you presently are and who you strive to be will define your actions each day.“Who you are becoming is more important than what you are accumulating.” – Robin Sharma Click To Tweet
As you implement and execute your plans and goals, expect to adjust them as the year goes by.
When you move forward, you will learn something new that you had not considered before that will lead you to an even better path. Be willing to adjust your goals and plans accordingly.
If we are inflexible and unwilling to bend to the complexities of life we either break or the path becomes unmanageable to navigate and all progress stops.
Failed plans should not be interpreted as a failed vision. Visions don’t change, they are only refined. Plans rarely stay the same and are scrapped or adjusted as needed. Be stubborn about the vision, but flexible with your plan.” – John C. Maxwell
Don’t forget to allow your “whys” to guide your plan and adjust as needed.
Be Others-Focused as well as Me-Focused
Paul says in Philippians 2:4,
“Let each of you look not only to his own interests but also to the interests of others.”
Often our plans and goals are very “me” focused. Could I suggest you add an element where you have an “add-value to others” focus? Think about how you can impact and influence others.
Consider doing something for or giving to someone without expecting anything in return.“You can’t live a perfect day until you do something for someone who will never be able to repay you.” – John Wooden Click To Tweet
Determine What You Will Stop Doing
Once you decide what you want to accomplish for the year, it’s important to count the cost of your goals. Often, we need more time in our schedules to accomplish our newly set goals. One surefire way to create time in your schedule is to stop doing certain activities that currently occupy your time.
SUCCESS TIP: Consider making a “Stop Doing” list that contains the activities and behaviors that you need to remove from your life to make time for your newly identified goals.
"Most of us lead busy but undisciplined lives. We have ever-expanding ‘to do’ lists, trying to build momentum by doing, doing, doing—and doing more. And it rarely works. Those who built the good-to-great companies, however, made as much use of ‘stop doing’ lists as ‘to do’ lists." – Jim Collins
Having boundaries that help you negotiate your schedule is powerful. It gives you clarity and focus that will help you have success and smile more this year.
Related, Articles, Videos, and Podcast Episode
Have you read my earlier blog posts on goal setting? Here’s a list with a link to each post:
- Your First Step to an Extraordinary New Year. Pause and reflect by asking, “Where have I been? and “Where am I now?”
- A Mindset to Accomplish Your Dreams. Dream and use six key “principles” to think as you are asking yourself “Where am I going?”
- 5 Tips to Accomplish your Goals. Get more done by using five tips to guide your thinking about your goals.
- Write Effective Goals for the New Year. Follow a simple two-step process to write effective goals
- Now is The Time to Act on Your Goals. Five steps to gain traction on your goals now.
Free Live Group Coaching with Q&A for the Whole Community!
To help equip our community of leaders with a better mindset to accomplish their goals and dreams this YEAR.
Coming this January 24, 2023, Bobby Albert, CEO of Values-Driven Culture, will host a FREE and LIVE group coaching experience discussing
“Why Leaders Need to Anchor In Christ During Turbulent Times”
Are you trying to gain traction on your goals for the new year? Are some of those goals already starting to slip?
Join us as we look at how our goals reveal the spiritual condition of our hearts but also impact the physical reality of our personal and professional life. Pausing, reflecting, and evaluating will impact our daily habits, and reveal who we really trust.
Join us on Zoom to:
- Hear why Christian leaders shouldn’t make choices out of survival mode or a scarcity mindset.
- Receive a FREE personal goal-setting resource that transformed Bobby’s relationships where he lives, works, and plays – and can do the same for you.
- Enter this year with steadfast peace and clarity only Christ offers
If you have not yet, set aside time to write a goal for each of the seven life areas that I have developed to help you identify and record your personal goals for this year!
I walk you through four simple steps in my Goal Setting Workbook, which you can get for free by registering for the Live Group Coaching Call with Q & A Here>>>> https://bit.ly/3YKw5OK