Have you ever noticed that the beautiful thing about a new year is that it acts likes a reset button? As soon as the clock strikes 12pm on the 31st of December there’s a feeling of possibility and wonder for what the next 365 days may bring. Maybe there’ll be a trip overseas, a change in your career, an introduction of a meditation practice, a new relationship or birth, a shift to your own business. Being in the business of creating new outcomes we get excited just thinking about it!
You set resolutions in the hope that these dreams will come to pass but then a week, a month, a few months later you notice that they’ve fallen by the wayside… Sound familiar? It doesn’t have to be! Especially when you know the secret to making dreams a reality.
It all starts by asking a simple question
For Emma, a new year is a great time to pause and reflect on daily life, the results or outcomes you’re getting and the rituals and habitual patterns that support you to achieve this. She believes the first thing you need to do is ask yourself, “Am I getting the results or outcomes I want?”
“Think of life like a recipe,” she continues. “Your habits are the ingredients and if you stick with the same ingredients, same quantities, same order, same method you will likely produce the same ‘life cake’, like always making resolutions that you never see through.”
As Einstein also said “The definition of insanity is doing the same things over and over again and expecting different results”.
If this sounds like you let’s give you a new method and ingredients to play with in 2017 shall we?
The ‘3-step-method’ to cultivating clear intentions
Before we get started let’s banish the notion of the vague ‘new year’s resolution’ and get you started with a new ritual our ”Three Step New Year’s Ritual”.
Note: We literally put this into practice last week at our annual CLARETY business planning retreat. It got the creative juices flowing then helped us gain clarity on which intentions we needed to focus on and, the rituals we would need to put in place to make them a reality.
Here it is – with love from us to you!
1. Create and cleanse
Emma says, “when consciously embracing the energy and promise of a new year it’s important to look up and dream, imagine where you are heading next, connect with what makes your heart sing, what really matters most, that deep ‘why’ that keeps you going”. Take a walk into nature or create the right environment indoors.
You can do the latter as a ‘cleansing ritual’ by asking yourself what must you let go of in order to get what you want in 2017? Clutter, clothes, old papers, jars, containers, plastic bags, shoes, beliefs, habits… Clear out what you no longer need at both work and home to make space for the new.
2. Reflect and grow
The key to reflection is to do it with a learning frame. Rather than focusing on what didn’t work, what you didn’t achieve or what you let slip to the bottom of the priority pile we encourage you to reflect with curiosity, compassion, gratitude and a learning lens.
Reflect instead on what you loved about the past year, all that you accomplished and where you are today instead. Acknowledgement and appreciation is a powerful fuel to keep you motivated and continuing to take action.
Grab a pen and paper to jot down your answers to these questions while thinking about your past year.
- Three things you are most grateful for from 2016?
- What did you learn in 2016?
- What did you start, maintain and or finish in 2016?
- What key word reflects the summary / theme / energy of your 2016?
- 2016 will be the year I remember because….
- Zoom out to the end of your life and look back from this position, what are the things that really matter most to you? How can you make these things even more of a priority in 2017?
- What is your key word or theme to reflect your intention for 2017?
3. The daily five to thrive
With your key word and intention in mind, start to imagine how you could be embodying them daily.
Motivation and productivity guru John Maxwell, says you need to do five actions daily in order to successfully achieve your desires. He calls it the Rule of Five.
“Motivation gets you going but discipline keeps you growing,” he says. “That’s the law of consistency.”
For example, if your key word was ‘integrate’ and your intention is to thrive at both work and home versus getting home and feeling exhausted by the end of the week. Try integrating your wellbeing practice throughout your working days and see how much more energy you have in your days and at the end of the week:
- Start the morning right – Kick-start your metabolism with hot water and lemon.
- Get moving – Walk to work or get off the bus a couple of stops earlier.
- Mindfulness or meditation practice (try Headspace) – Make time to sit still for 10 minutes at lunch.
- Digital sunset – switch off all devices two hours before bed.
- Reflect and review the day – journal feedback on what was great in your day and give feedback to yourself.
If five actions are feeling like a bit too much of a challenge? Start with one thing that you do daily for the first week and build up another ritual every week for five weeks.
Stuck for inspiration? Take a look at our article here on the blog to develop your 5 actions and, in the spirit of sharing, here are ours…
Emma Says ”My key word for this year is ‘arête’ – it’s a Greek word which for me means to live the highest expression of myself. My daily five rituals to thrive are based on some of my top wellbeing values;
- Flexibility – move my body, yoga
- Growth – learn by reading new books and listening to podcasts, tedtalks, etc
- Connection – connecting and being present with those I love
- Nourish – hydration with lemon water and colourful alive food
- Mindful – practice at least a few moments before sleep and upon waking, deep conscious breathe each time I send and email
Clare says, “my key word this year is ‘expansion’. I have had a well established set of daily health and well-being rituals but it’s time to challenge and shake things up. This year is about expanding to another level both personally and professionally so I need to make some changes to do that. My daily ‘five to thrive’ have changed as a result;
- Nutrition – reduction of animal protein and dairy in my diet
- Movement – the addition of strength training into my exercise plan
- Sustainability – a commitment to reduce plastic consumption (bags, coffee cups!)
- Growth – read or watch education documentaries in the evening
- Connection – spend time mindfully listening and connecting to my partner and those around me
How are you feeling now about making your intentions a reality in 2017?
We’d love to enact the power of ‘commitments’ a well-know behavioural economics law from Cialdini who says we are more likely to act if we commit to the change we want publicly. So hit reply or share and post your intentions and actions with us.