There may have been a time where “keeping up” with the world allowed one to maintain their position in life. We live in a knowledge-driven world – one in which the only constant is change. To avoid another year of failed expectations, approach your “resolution process” systematically. Make sure you exercise your right to live – to make decisions, accept responsibility for change, assume accountable for implementation AND enjoy the praise when your dreams come to fruition (or take intentional action should your path fall short of its intended destination). Some basic things you should consider before closing out your old year and exchanging it for new hopes, dreams and opportunities would include:
Review your last year’s accomplishments. Identify what you resolved to accomplish last year. Celebrate your successes by “shouting them from the rooftops” to a friend or co-worker. Determine if the obstacles keeping you from tasting success were “inside or outside” of your control – and if anything was done to eliminate the roadblocks that prevented you from realizing your goals. Do not forget to list successes from the year that were not part of your resolution process. Just because you did not “resolve” to initiate a change does not mean “credit” should not be taken for its accomplishment. The difference between successful people and those that seem to hover at the edge of greatness is often one of perspective. Some assume success is a foregone conclusion while others think of it merely as a remote possibility!
Clearly define and record your goals for the coming year. Share them with someone you trust to establish accountability. Telling someone, however, is not enough. You should maintain contact with your “support network” throughout the year to keep you “on task” and focused. Secret goals are rarely accomplished and no (or low) expectations rarely result in significant change. While "shooting low" will keep you from being disappointed, it will never reward you in a meaningful way, either..
Regardless of what your goals might be for 2016, remember that the only bad resolution is one never resolved. The only wrong action is action never taken. The only unforgivable mistake is one that did not teach. Reflect on last year’s successes - replicating the positive actions that “made a difference” while thinking about your failures just long enough to understand what went wrong so you can avoid repeating them. When you consciously resolve to move forward - taking one step at a time - the sky will be your only limit!