Regardless of how you ring in the New Year (with lively parties and fireworks or cozy celebrations at home), there is a recurring theme at every New Year’s celebration: to the make this year the best year ever.
“If you get clear on the what, the how will be taken care of.” - Jack Canfield
Here are a few things you can do to make 2018 your best year yet.
1. Review Last Year
First, take inventory of last year. By reviewing last year and all the ups and downs of 2017, we are provided with the map to moving forward into 2018. Reflecting deeply on last year can highlight your successes and – more importantly – the areas most in need of improvement.
Find a quiet room in your house and carve out a bit of meditation time. Don’t be afraid to ask yourself the hard questions; the answers to the hardest of questions will only help you grow. Use a journal to collect your thoughts so that you can refer back to your answers.
- What were the biggest accomplishments of 2017?
- Why were those accomplishments meaningful for you? What did they signify?
- Did you have any regrets? What were they?
- What obstacles did you face?
- What goals did you reach?
- What goals did you not meet?
- What are you not happy with in your life right now? This could be personal, professional, spiritual. Identify the areas that you want to improve, and be as specific as you can be.
- And finally, what was the overall recurring theme of 2017?
By taking the time to review the events of the previous year, you not only have the opportunity to be grateful for all the good moments, but you also gain the knowledge of where and what to improve.
It is only when you know which areas truly need improving (and why), that you can work towards creating the best year ever.
Make 2018 Your Best Year Ever By Creating Your Extraordinary Life Plan.
2. Try This Instead of Making New Year's Resolutions
Next, don’t make New Year’s resolutions. On the outside, making New Year’s resolutions seems like a festive way to bolster optimism and prepare for the upcoming year.
However, there is a reason for so many jokes about resolutions fizzling out before Valentine’s Day: many individuals simply do not follow through on their resolutions – despite their best intentions.
Instead of setting resolutions, set New Year’s goals.
Although those words may seem interchangeable, understanding the difference can help you make the best out of 2018.
While a resolution is intended to be a promise you keep indefinitely, a goal refers to a specific achievement by a specific date.
An example of a resolution is something like, “I will go the gym every day.”
You intend to keep this promise, but because it is unrealistic, you lose momentum once you miss a few days and you realize you cannot keep this promise.
A goal is:
“I will run a 5K by April 30th, 2018.”
Unlike the resolution which has no end in sight, this goal has a very specific and measurable achievement (run a 5K) and deadline (April 30th). Because of these characteristics, goals are much easier to keep. And yes, it might entail going to the gym a lot, but you are not committing to more than you can realistically handle.
When you make your New Year’s goals, be sure to be as specific as you can. That is one of the keys to your success.
3. Create a Breakthrough Goal for the Year
A well-formed goal is both powerful and measurable. Specifically, a goal must quantify something, and it must list a specific date for completion. Going back to the goal versus resolution example from above, a good goal is:
“I will participate in the charity 5K on April 21st, and I will complete it in 30 minutes or less.”
As admirable of a goal as that is, your year has even greater chances of success if you set a breakthrough goal. A breakthrough goal is a goal that will quantum leap your success, a large goal that could dramatically changes your life dramatically.
Carefully consider possible breakthrough goals for yourself. What would dramatically change your life?
Instead of just running a 5K, set a breakthrough goal such as losing 35 pounds or totally eliminating the need for a certain medication.
Instead of just volunteering at the polls, set a breakthrough goal to run for a local office.
Or set a breakthrough goal to write a book, earn your Master’s degree or get your real estate license.
Because a breakthrough goal has the power to transform your life, it also has the power to make 2018 your best year ever. This fact alone makes setting a breakthrough goal one of the most powerful things you can do for your future success and future happiness. Follow these tips to make 2018 your best year ever.