Happy New Year! It's a brand new year which means a brand new chance for you to finally reach those resolutions or goals you've been longing for. But how many times have you set resolutions over the years that ultimately went unmet?
I know; I've done it too. That's why I'm sharing these tips with you—tips I know work because I've not only shared them with clients but I use them too after years of trying different things. I know now what was missing then, and I've proven to myself this is a winning combination.
FINDING SUCCESS THIS YEAR
It's not like we can't set resolutions any old time we want, but there's something magical about the new year that opens up a fresh space for us. It just feels good to mark the past, put it behind us and get a new start, especially if this isn't our first go-round with a particular resolution.
Most everyone I know who sets a new year's resolution is all fired up and motivated in January. Not so much in February, and by March or April whatever it was they were doing has drifted away. The diet is dropped, the gym membership forgotten, the art project unfinished, the garage still a mess, the closet not organized, etc.. I'm guilty of this too. So how do we makes this year's resolution different?
WHAT OLD SUCCESS WAS
You've likely heard many tips for success before and I'm not suggesting you throw them out. They are useful but if you're anything like me, you've tried them and still you've fallen short on your resolutions. So I'm here to tell you why.
But first let's run through some of the old tips, just to be sure you know them:
- Make sure your goal is SMART - Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-bound.
- Pair up with someone you can talk to about the ups and downs of it and who can hold you accountable.
- Start simple or slow to ensure early success; then raise the ante as you make progress.
- Build in a reward for short-term goals that are met, which means break down larger goals into smaller steps that are SMART.
- Track your progress and celebrate each step to success.
Before we go there, let's take a quick look at how we define success because this is important. Everyone has their own idea of what success means and for me, true success goes beyond the individual and into the greater good. So what I'm talking about when I use the word success is doing something that empowers you to share your unique and amazing gifts with the world in a way that inspires more goodness for us all.
This doesn't have to be anything earth-shattering or mind-blowing. For instance, changing your eating from unhealthy to healthy achieves the kind of success I'm talking about. So don't panic!
REBOOTING YOUR RESOLUTION
To reboot your new year's resolution, start by looking at it in a new way. What made you choose the resolution you chose? Why does it matter to you? How will it positively change things? And how are you relating to it? Let's dive in and get a handle on what it means to reboot your resolution for success.
1. STRONG DESIRE: The strength of your desire determines your success.
Make sure your resolution—or goal—is something you truly have a strong desire to accomplish. This must be something you really want for yourself and your life. Because if you don't or you just aren't that excited about it, chances are you won't be successful.
Consider this: how excited are you about having an organized closet? Is that just a task you've been dreading or is it something you really want to do? If you really want it, why? What's beneath your desire for an organized closet? Keep digging until you find the real motivation behind your goal. If it's not something you get emotional about, you haven't found it yet.
2. STRONG DEVOTION: The strength of your devotion determines your success.
Most people talk about commitment, dedication or discipline, but I'm talking about devotion because when you are devoted to something, you are passionate about it! Most of us are devoted to something. What are you devoted to? What do you do on a regular basis?
If you are engaging in an activity on a regular basis, you can say you are devoted to it. It's usually something that is our habit and many of our habits don't serve us. I know people who are devoted to things like sweets, sex, porn, drugs, alcohol, internet, and late-night binge eating...all ego drives and desires. We'll tackle this next.
But for now, check yourself—does what you are devoted to serve you? What would you like to devote yourself to instead? What could you devote yourself to that would uplift and elevate your life? That's something worth devoting to, as we see next.
3. STRONG ENERGY: The strength of your energy determines your success.
Now I'm going to share a little secret with you: It takes energy to change things. It even takes energy to think about changing things! So where is your energy going? If your energy is tangled up in old habits that don't serve you—thoughts, feelings, actions—you don't have the energy you need to do something different.
And here's the kicker—most of us habitually do what doesn't serve us because we feed all our energy to the drives and desires of the ego rather than those of our Highest Self. The ego either grasps for or pushes away from things out of fear, and even though fear is a powerful motivator, it doesn't get us very far.
Rebooting your resolution means learning to serve the drives and desires of your Soul above those of your ego. And the Soul's greatest drive and desire is to evolve. The Soul longs to elevate out of fear and closer to its true nature of love. For that to happen, you must use more of your energy in service to your Soul (or Higher Self) than to your ego. As important as this is, the next tip I give you is most important of all...
4. STRONG WILL: The strength of your will determines your success.
Ask anyone who invented something new or created something amazing and they will share stories of all the ups, downs, pitfalls and failed attempts they had before they were successful. It's just the nature of the beast! As Human beings, we are always on a learning curve, working our way toward mastery.
Even one of the most enlightened masters, Jesus Christ, had moments of weakness where he slipped off his intended path. It's okay! But every time you pick yourself up and start again, you are one step closer to success, and that is key.
Success takes a strong willingness to get yourself back on track and keep going every time you wobble, fall or fail. That is the true practice—starting again rather than giving up.
SIGNS OF PROGRESS
I've learned that we get what we want when we are truly ready to embrace and honor it, and not a moment before. As you move forward with your resolution, you will begin to notice signs that things are changing. And others will notice too.
Success usually isn't a steady upward ascension; instead it's more like a staircase where each successful step leads to the next obstacle to master. But every step you take and each obstacle you master means you are inching closer and closer to success. And when you are ready inside and out to fully embrace, honor and hold your resolution with integrity, you will be successful!
RELEASING OLD RESOLUTIONS
Now that you are clear on what you want to change and how to change it, it's important to release yourself from old resolutions or goals that you no longer want or that don't have a strong pull for you anymore. You are an evolving, dynamic creature and as such, what you want can change. But every time you think you want something, the idea of it lives somewhere in your psyche, holding a thread of your energy until you release it.
Consciously releasing old resolutions can give you the extra boost of energy you need to be more successful with your new one. Release them with love and gratitude for whatever they brought you, knowing you can reclaim them if ever you choose to in the future.