HOW TO GET A LIFE – using a powerful 6 step goal setting plan

 IS THIS ALL THERE IS? I WAS EXPECTING SOMETHING DIFFERENT .

Many people today are wondering if their life is as good as it will ever get? And if it is now, is their life in fact good enough for the rest of their life? Yet, they can’t identify what is not quite right, what is in fact the missing piece/s. What would make them more fulfilled, more satisfied and less like a juggler, trying to keep all the balls in the air?

The answer is in fact, not just one thing, but a series or combination of small things that together make a huge difference in our lives. To maximise these potential results, it’s worth making an appointment with yourself right now – you might call it a ME DAY – a time when you will give yourself at least half a day to plan the rest of your life, or at least the next 5 years. Consider it a wellness day off, rather than a sickie. A day to plan the small changes you need to introduce into your life to truly achieve your true potential. As they say, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. All you will need for your ME DAY is a notebook, pen, your diary, this article to keep youon track and of course an open mind.

 Step one: YOUR ROAD MAP Start by answering some revealing questions. Are you happy most of the time? Do you know where you are going this year? Where do you want to be two , five or ten years from now? If you knew you could not fail, what would you really like to be doing career-wise? Setting goals enables us to really create a future diary for our lives. Reports show that only 5% of the population set goals and only 3% actually write the goals down. Some people avoid writing goals down because they feel it is a major commitment. Let’s think of it as a major commitment for your life, no one else’s.

Let’s start with short term goals – things you would like to happen within the next six to twelve months. These goals may be written under the headings:

 Career            Personal Relationships                      Financial Security

 Property         Health & Fitness                                 Spirituality                             Creativity

 Personal Development                    Travel                       Life Balance        

 Social Responsibility (giving back to the community)

 These twelve categories will form the basis of your road map – what you would like your life to look like if you knew you could not fail.

You may like to write your goals down using the present tense, a specific time frame and positive language. e.g. On or before December 1, 2012 I own my own home located at Manly. On or before January 1, 2012, I am running a successful small business with a turnover of $X. The more specific you are the easier for your subconscious to picture this reality. The perfect setting for writing my goals down is outside surrounded by nature. However, that might not suit you or if that is not possible, maybe some relaxing music, aromatherapy oils, mobile phone diverted – this is ME TIME do not disturb. Be assured the world won’t end if you are not around for a half day, trust me.

 LONG TERM GOALS Are goals specifically targeting a 2, 5 or 10 year period. It may be helpful to estimate your age 10 years from now and then work backwards. What would you like to be doing in 2020 2015 etc. . .if you knew you could not fail – this is the key – let’s start thinking abundantly – where we expect miracles to happen every day, and there are plenty of opportunities for everyone – rather than scarcity, when you have tunnel vision and feel overwhelmed with your lot in life.

Once you have written the goals, you then need to read the goals twice a day and add to your goals list as your confidence builds. This becomes part of your 10 minute a day healthy habit.

 Step Two: POSITIVE SELF TALK Reports vary on whether we speak 50,000 or 80,000 words every day but all reports agree that the bulk of our self talk is negative. Women are great at beating themselves up when things don’t quite go to plan. As superwomen our expectation is that we will get through our to-do-list totally, clean the house, cook a three course meal and write a report – all before 8 pm. When we don’t achieve this superwoman status that’s often when the negative self talk starts, ‘I’m not good enough, I’ll never keep my job, lose that weight, get ahead, and so it goes. . .’” The next time you catch yourself putting yourself down, or worse still agreeing with someone who is putting you down, STOP. Correct your language, ‘Yes that was a stupid thing to do, however, I am not stupid, what I did was silly.’ The more you catch yourself doing this, the less you will do it.

Often in sales or business development roles, we take rejection personally. Instead of saying to ourselves, ‘They are rejecting my product or service, they are not rejecting me. I don’t need to take this rejection personally.’ Working on our self talk is a full time role, however, the results can be astounding.

Step Three: BECOME FINANCIALLY SAVVY Until we get on top of our finances and budgeting, we will never have mastery of our lives. Becoming financially savvy is very empowering and within the reach of every woman. There are many books and courses available on the subject. One in particular, ‘Women’s business women’s wealth’ by Amanda Ellis will give you very practical insights into creating your own financial freedom. No matter where you are starting from, no matter how low your nest egg, get started today – this is non-negotiable in your path to success and happiness.

 Imagine you are with a financial advisor, and you have been asked to list all of your assets and an approx. dollar value. Next list all of your commitments, monies owed, credit card debt, absolutely everything. Next list all the money you expect to receive in the next 12 months. This is a start in giving you a snapshot of exactly where you stand financially, if you don’t already know or have buried your head in the sand previously.

If the picture looks pretty grim, don’t despair. Diarise to make an appointment with your financial provider to discuss your situation and work out a budget to work towards for the next 12 months. Realise also that many of the ‘things’ we buy, are short term fixes to make us feel good temporarily. Once the afterglow of the shopping spree dissolves, we are back to feeling lousy and we have increased our debt level.

I heard a definition of the four steps to happiness recently from Jack Canfield: 1. Stuff 2. More Stuff 3. Different Stuff 4. Giving back to the community

Step Four: DEVELOP A POSITIVE SUPPORT NETWORK Make a list of the most positive people in your life, those people who really support you and energise you when you speak to them or see them face to face. Plan how you can create opportunities to see more of those people or have more contact even by email, their positive spirit will shine through. Make contact with two or three of these people and ask for help in becoming more positive. Believe it or not, they will give you heaps of suggestions and encouragement and that’s exactly what you need. Who knows they might be in need of a positive charge as well – so you will be helping each other.

 If you hang out with predominantly negative people and actually don’t know many positive people, consider taking up a course, new hobby or sport the more active the better. Volunteering is a great way to meet interesting people as well as giving back to the community. It’s very hard to stay negative when you are active. You rarely see a negative sportsperson, unless they are injured. Joining a gym or walking group can also be an opportunity to mix with new positive people. Which leads us in to:

 Step Five: REGULAR EXERCISE When we feel sluggish, tired, rundown and overall pretty flat, it is often because we are not exercising regularly. ‘I’m too tired to go to the gym, or go for a walk’ is often the catchcry after a long working day. However, once you make the effort you feel fantastic and your body really responds to regular exercise. If necessary find an exercise buddy, who will keep you honest in your commitment to exercise 3-4 times per week. Alternately find an exercise that doesn’t seem like exercise e.g. dancing, yoga, sailing, Zumba, tennis, 10 pin bowling or tai chi.

Open your diary and make a series of exercise appointments for the next month. If you need to postpone an exercise appointment, you must reschedule it straight away ideally within the same week. If your budget is stretched, what about walking – whether its with a walking buddy or by yourself – walking is a great way to re-energise and get fit.

And if you are not fit – YET – try walking to the corner and back. Next time, walk a little further than the corner even if you start with 10-15 minutes per day. Eventually you will find that you can cover more territory in the same amount of time – the fitter you get the the further you will walk and the longer you will be able to walk for.

Keep picturing what you want your life to look like twelve months from now. If possible, create a collage of images depicting what that life will look like for you. Magazines comein handy here for photos and headlines highlighting the NEW YOU – that diamond within that may have been covered up with stuff, challenges, trying to please others, living beyond your means, trying unsuccessfully to please everyone except yourself.

Step Six: REVIEW YOUR ME DAY Wow, where has your ME DAY gone – already the half day is gone and you haven’t even got to having regular fun, socialising, meditation, decision making, nutrition, outsourcing, finding a mentor, etc. etc. but you have made a start.

To follow on from your ME DAY, the most empowering thing you can do on a daily basis is to give yourself ME TIME, even if it’s only 15 minutes. Time to review your day, record your wins, what went well, what you learned from any mistakes you made – a reality check. Are you on track? If not, you are probably not putting ME first in your life?

One step at a time, one day at a time and on the really tough days – one hour at a time – that is how you create your life of choice. A friend gave me a wonderful quote – ‘THIS TOO WILL PASS’ – whether it is good or bad situations – in time they pass. And I will leave you with an anonymous quote – that allows you to dream beyond your wildest dreams – TO THOSE WHO BELIEVE, ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE.

One Response to “HOW TO GET A LIFE – using a powerful 6 step goal setting plan”

  1. Dan Says:

    If you’d like a tool for setting your goals, you can use this web application:

    Gtdagenda.com

    You can use it to manage your goals, projects and tasks, set next actions and contexts, use checklists, schedules and a calendar.
    A Vision Wall (inspiring images attached to yor goals) is available too.
    Works also on mobile, and syncs with Evernote.

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