It’s that time again, when New Year’s resolutions have us feeling like Superwoman with our hands on our hips, full of confidence and declaring to the world that this is going to be the year I get in the best shape of my life, save massive amounts of money, and organize my entire house from top to bottom. We are ALL IN, ready to change absolutely everything in an instant because this is THE YEAR. We are fully motivated and we know everything that needs to change. So, we get up at 5 am and go to the gym, taking our sweaty selfie of pride. We clean out our closets and donate all the things our kids have outgrown to Goodwill. We clip coupons and make the decision not to buy the super-cute shoes because, we remind ourselves, we don’t really need them right now. YES, we’re on a roll!!! And then….it’s too cold outside to get up at 5 am, so we say, forget today because I’ve done so well. Meetings run late and the kids are begging for dinner, so a drive-thru it is. And on it goes, one circumstance or choice after another derailing our great intentions. Just like that, we’ve gone from feeling like Superwoman to crazy woman, right back where we started, and it’s only January 15th.
This is exactly how I used to live my life, being led and reacting to the daily circumstances around me. I was really tired of feeling the same way year after year, repeating the same patterns. I decided it was time to find a different way, one that could really work. I learned three key strategies to begin the New Year that actually move me forward each year. Essentially, I learned how to lead my life and take action through alignment, which was the secret to finally making it all stick for lasting changes.
#1 – Find YOUR word.
Pick a word that summarizes how you want to be or feel throughout this new year. I always pick one that represents something I need to work on or want more of in my life. Words I’ve used are abundance and surrender, and this year is limitless. Make your word visible in your life, as what you focus on expands. Post it in your office, on your phone or computer screensaver, use it in a quote for your signature line, etc. Ask yourself how your life can reflect more of your word, and focus on it when you are making tough choices by using your word in a question. You can base activities that you do during the year on your word, and it will encourage you to see opportunities from a different perspective. I’m always amazed every year how beautifully my word unfolds in lessons all year long and in ways I could never have imagined.
#2 – Make a list of 100 things to do in 2017.
Yes, 100! Why? Because this is a stretch exercise where you remove limitations, allow your creativity to be sparked, and give yourself permission to dream about your life. Write down anything that pops into your mind you really want to do, no matter how big or small. The goal is not to check everything off the list but to merely see which ones actually come true for you in the year. This also aligns your intentions, as you can easily cover every area of your life. The more specific your list is, the better. No limitations that come to mind are allowed to hold you back from writing it down (such as “I can’t afford that this year” or “There is no way I could do that”). Allow yourself to write down everything and anything that excites you, and you’ll be truly surprised how many get checked off during the year. I typically experience around 50. It’s always fun to review the list at the end of each month to see which ones I’ve checked off so far.
#3 – Schedule YOU first.
We have a tendency to schedule our lives around others. We lock in the events of our children, work commitments, and everything in between. However, we tend to not be our own scheduling priority. Not until I embraced the idea of leading my own life and aligning it with my intentions did I truly understand the concept of scheduling myself into my year before time got away from me. Now when I build my schedule, I include the things I need for me. I look at my calendar a year in advance, and schedule the events I can commit to that align with my intentions. For example, I love to travel and had a goal last year of doing 3 half-marathons. So I turned them all into race-cation weekends with one of my close friends and we booked all 3 at the beginning of the year. If you want to work on your relationship with your spouse, schedule in your date nights and actually have some creative ideas planned ahead. By creating this accountability and commitment to yourself, you’ve made your intentions a priority, and you’ve now locked them into your schedule.
By following these three easy strategies to ring in the New Year, you’ll be leading your life into one of action and adventure. Cheers to you feeling like an empowered woman in 2017, knowing you’ll have a year filled with fun and fulfillment, focused on your word and aligned with your intentions.
Keri Stanley is a Coach, Speaker, and Heart-centric Entrepreneur. Keri spends her life looking for the a-ha moments to share with her clients. She enjoys the diversity of a worldwide client base fostering a holistic approach to life and leading with direction. Her mission is to help women leaders finally say YES to themselves moving from optional to non-negotiable in their own lives knowing clearly who they are, what they want, and where they are going. Keri has been involved extensively with the clinical and corporate healthcare business for over 19 years because of her love of people. She brings a diverse background of business expertise, communication skills, and years of personal development to her coaching practice. During her free time, Keri loves spending time with her 12-year old twin boys who are her greatest teachers in life. She loves eating gourmet cupcakes, running half-marathons, travelling the world, and finding the peace of stillness. Her motto in life: Live Your WHOLE Story. Connect with Keri Stanley online here.