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Decide on what you actually want, not what you think you should want and not what someone else wants for you. This is critical and everything follows from this decision. Make the right choice or spend the year wasting your energy and time.
Write. It. Down. Seriously. If it’s not written down in your own handwriting, it’s not happening.
Have a vision. You must be able to actually see (literally) your end result. Faith is fine and dandy, but seeing is believing.
Create your vision board. Make it detailed and thorough. Pull out all the stops and don’t leave a single thought/detail out, no matter how seemingly small or minute. In fact, it’s the small things that will typically lead to massive breakthroughs.
Break your year down into seasons/quarters and break your goals down accordingly. They will be far more achievable when it broken down into smaller steps/goals.
Give it enough time to take effect, but learn to pivot quickly when something is obviously not working. Remember, nothing is set in stone and you are allowed to change your mind when it is clearly necessary.
Drop year resolutions. Most people fail at them because the attachment is to the year (time window) and not to their life. Decide how what you want this year fits into not just the year itself, but all the years that are going to come after it. Set lifestyle goals. Set yougoals.
Get an accountability buddy who wants the same thing(s) and has the same/similar mindset(s) of lifestyle versus specific-year resolutions.
Don’t be afraid to fail and don’t let it cripple/prevent you from taking action.
Move in silence. Do not trumpet your goals to everyone. If you want to share, lead by example.
Reevaluate your progress and goals at the end of each month/season. Use a planner.
A huge part of getting what you want at any given point is knowing what you want. But you really can’t know what you want until you know not only who you are, but who you want to become. This is fundamental in order to know and get everything you want, not only this year, but all the rest of the years of your life. Another fundamental pillar in getting what you want this year is to think about what you want, not in terms of goals, but habits. Just like money is not valuable in itself but a byproduct of value, your achievements are a byproduct of your habits. You are the ultimate product of your habits. You cannot gain money without offering value for it, and likewise cannot achieve what you want without first creating, building, and optimizing the habits required to achieve them. Having this shift in mindset may seem simple, but is absolutely crucial. For more detail on this, read Why Goals Create Pigeons and Habits Create Eagles.
So…decide on what you actually want.
Not what you think you should want and not what someone else wants for you. This includes “society” at large, the media, your parent(s)/guardian(s) and other family members, your teachers or professors, your friends and colleagues, your spouses and lovers, your children or grandchildren, etc. This is critical, and everything follows from this decision. It is the starting point and your core choice. Make the right one or spend this year wasting your energy and time, the latter of which is your most limited and valuable asset. Don’t rush yourself or rush the process in deciding, however. You owe it to yourself and all the resources and input you’re going to invest in order to get it, so make sure it is worthwhile and directly linked to your happiness. Oftentimes, we do, in fact, know what we want, but what holds us back from pursuing it is fear. Fear of the unknown. Fear of how to go about achieving it. Fear of failing at achieving it. Fear of what others will think or say. And, deep down, fear of actually succeeding. It is normal to be afraid, uncertain and unsure. What it comes down to, though, is how you react to that fear. This is why it is fundamental to know who you want to become so that you do not allow fear to stop, prevent or otherwise hinder you from pursuing what you want this year—or any other year—and from ultimately becoming yourself (the very best version). This is why it’s also necessary to distance or cut yourself off altogether from people who discourage or instill fear into you about getting the things you want or going the route you know you need to go in order to get to where you need to get to to become who you want to become in life. Associating with those who are like-minded and encouraging of your pursuits and dreams will make things exponentially easier and enjoyable. The journey to getting what you want has enough challenges on its own and you do not need the negative and toxic energy of those who choose to be negative and toxic to stand in your way and hold you back from achieving all that you know you can and will.
Write. It. Down. Seriously.
The act of physically writing something down in your own handwriting is a form of creation (because, one, your handwriting is your own and is akin to your fingerprints because it is impossible for anyone else to re-create it exactly and, two, you process information differently (read, better) when you write it down physically than if you type it out with built-in fonts—basically, somebody else’s handwriting). If it’s not written down in your own handwriting, it’s not happening. This may seem like an unnecessary or unimportant step, but it is crucial and fundamental. Do not skip it. It is absolutely necessary that you do this. And, no, I’m not just trying to be dramatic. Use your notebook, journal or an organizer like the Law of Attraction Planner that is structured with target-setting, high vibrational energy and self-reflection. It is a great tool to have on your path to getting what you want this year. Use it with erasable pens so that you can erase any mistakes you make when need be. However, keep in mind that there is value in keeping crossed out notes, ideas and doodles, etc. as they remind you of bits and pieces of the person you were and your state of mind when you wrote them, allowing you to keep track of your self-improvement and growth in an intimate way. You must write every single desired target down and it’s also important to decide their order of importance to you. Writing down the things you want on a wall calendar or whiteboard is also a good idea, so you can more obviously see—and be reminded of—your desires and targets. The more places you can write your targets down, the better because the act of repetition reinforces what you’re writing down and seeing your targets in different places and in different ways (ink on a planner or Post-It notes, marker on a whiteboard or laminated calendar, chalk on a blackboard, etc.) reinforces your targets in your mind and reiterates and reminds you of what you want all the time. Also make it a habit to physically write down your targets every single day as though you are writing lines. However, this is not punishment. In fact, quite the opposite. It is encouragement and an ongoing reward to keep yourself on track and accountable to yourself for what you want. This also has the added benefit of forcing you to reassess what you want frequently. You’ll find that, in writing your targets down every single day for the year, the things you genuinely want will stay consistent and, if they do change, they will change marginally/superficially. Other times, you may find that you may want certain things, but they do not take precedence or priority over others. And some things you may want at the start, you realize are not as important to you as you initially thought as time goes on. This daily reassessment of what you want is so important, so fundamental and is a great way to cross-examine yourself and allow yourself to self-reflect constantly. This will tell you far more about who you are at the given moment than most things. In fact, it is probably one of the best things you can do for yourself this year, no matter what your other targets are. Remember, your handwriting is powerful and is most powerful to you, the person who creates it. So, use it and use it every day.
Have a vision. Literally.
You must be able to actually see your end result. Visualize what having the habits you want to achieve this year is like. Visualize what it means for you, how it will change your life and what that achievement means for next year. Faith is fine and dandy, but seeing is truly believing. That’s why it’s much easier to pursue something you’ve seen someone else do or accomplish before than something no one else has ever even attempted. When you see proof and evidence of what’s possible, it’s a lot easier to go after what you want. Read blogs and books from people who have accomplished what you’ve set out to and who are where you want to be this time next year. If that’s losing weight, (whether a specific amount, getting to a particular dress size, or simply feeling physically stronger and healthier), making six or seven figures, becoming better at managing your money, growing your hair longer, not biting your nails, learning how to cook for yourself, becoming a better parent (to human and/or nonhuman children), having a successful relationship (romantic, platonic, sexual, or familial) or simply becoming more of the person you want to be, make it habit to daydream of yourself in that state of having achieved what you want already. Think of it in the present, as though it has already happened. Literally picture yourself living your life next year having those things. Being those things.
Create your vision board.
Following from the previous point, when you have a vision and can visualize your success and all the things you want this year, take it a step further and make your vision something tangible.
This is something that reflects what you see in your mind and when you daydream. This is the first step that takes you from what would be wishful thinking to realization. Make it very detailed and be thorough. Don’t hold back when creating this. Pull out all the stops and don’t leave a single thought/detail out, no matter how seemingly small or minute. In fact, it’s the little things that will typically lead to massive breakthroughs and progress through the year. Having both a digital and physical vision board is ideal. A physical vision board placed in an area where you always see it will have the most impact. Placing it in a home office or in your bedroom will give you a visual reminder every day of what you want this year and prompt you to continuously visualize and imagine what your success looks like and, therefore, your motivation to manifest it into reality. Use stickers and fun, bold colors to make it nice to look at so that you’re actually motivated and encouraged to always look at it which will continuously reinforce your success in your mind. Use the printables included in your STAR+er membership. Use apps like Pinterest to create a digital vision board. This is very easy to do and ideal to have because it is easily accessible through a device you likely already use every day—your phone. The advantage of a digital vision board over a physical one is that of preservation and longevity. It is easier to maintain, edit and keep your digital vision board, especially over multiple years, than your physical vision board. However, you can always digitize your physical vision board by taking a picture or scan of it. That way, you don’t have to worry about losing/misplacing it or it being subjected to natural wear, tear, smudging and fading over time. The advantage a physical vision board has over a digital one is the ability for you to use your own handwriting when creating it, and we’ve already discussed how powerful it is to create something in your own handwriting versus someone else’s.
Break your year down into seasons/quarters and break your habits down accordingly.
There is a reason even large corporations do this, as well; breaking each fiscal year down and analyzing performance based on quarters (assessing their progress and financial performance every three months). This is a good block of time to assess what is working and what is not, and, therefore, what you should double down on and what you should tweak, change or eliminate altogether. This also makes the process a lot less intimidating and overwhelming and more manageable. Your habits will be far more achievable when broken down into smaller targets and not feel so intimidating. For instance, if you want to build the habit of being physically fit and one of your targets is to lose 100 pounds, that number may feel like a whole lot up front and quite discouraging, even. But if you break it down through the year, it comes down to less than 10 pounds a month. Suddenly, that’s a lot more achievable. Broken down further into weeks, suddenly, you find that it’s not nearly as intimidating or out of reach as it once seemed in the beginning and you’re a lot more inclined, encouraged and motivated to pursue that target— and build a fitness habit—because you see that it is achievable. And, paired with visualizing how much better your life will be once you build the habit and creating a vision board for yourself, you’re likely to not just pursue the habit but stick with it and follow up. A huge part of us not getting what we want is the sheer overwhelm and discouragement we feel when we set out to achieve something, a.k.a., analysis paralysis and fear of failure, respectively. If we feel that the habit is possible but improbable (too far out of our current grasp), we then feel that it is unattainable and, therefore, we won’t bother trying to create or adopt it. Make sure all your habits are attainable and be realistic about the timeframe you’re giving yourself to achieve them so that you don’t end up setting yourself up for self-sabotage in your haste to build habits quicker. It’s better to be slow and steady and consistent than to try and do everything in, say, 30 days. The process itself oftentimes is far more insightful and teaches you more about yourself than the end habit or destination. If you want to double your income from say, $60,000 to $120,000, breaking down the habit(s) required of you to add one or more income stream(s) that will bring you an additional $60,000 and/or investing in yourself education-wise to increase your skill set (and, therefore, skyrocket your net worth) so that you have access to more opportunities for higher paying jobs. Broken down through the year, that’s an additional $5,000 a month. That feels a lot more manageable, doable and less intimidating than $60,000.
Give things enough time to take effect, but learn to pivot quickly when something is obviously not working.
It’s tempting to rush things because we often want to see results quickly and even the most patient of us can’t deny the appeal of instant or speedy gratification. But it’s important to exercise patience and trust the process. Consistency has a compounding effect, much like money, so your efforts will accumulate interest over time and, in total, will be greater than the sum of their individual acts/repetitions. Remember, nothing is set in stone and you are allowed to change your mind when it is clearly necessary. Don’t feel like you have to be tethered to or trapped by a target you’ve set or a timeline you’ve allocated for a habit. This is why daily assessment is important. It allows you to monitor what’s working and what isn’t as you go without hindering your progress. The point is not to be paranoid, but to simply be observant and aware of what’s going on with your progress or lack thereof, and why. Sometimes, it’s very obvious when something simply isn’t working and no amount of time and tweaking will improve it. In those cases and instances, it’s important not to waste time and energy hoping that things will get better and not be in denial. Things won’t work out sometimes and that’s okay. It’s part of the process. Failing is not the opposite of success, it is simply part of the journey to success. A lot of figuring out what works is figuring out what doesn’t. So, keep track of what doesn’t work so that you can learn from and refer back to that which will ensure you don’t end up repeating the same mistakes and wasting time with what you know isn’t getting you anywhere. Again, use it as a learning experience and do not think of your initial mishaps and fails as wasted time. It is only wasted time when you do not learn from your mistakes and continue to repeat them (this is true for life in general). Again, you are allowed to change your targets and habits and the timelines for when you want to achieve them. There is almost a guarantee that you will change something along the course of the year as you pursue what you want.
Drop New Year resolutions.
Yes, seriously. You’ve likely done this at one point and it may feel both good and logical to. New Year resolutions sound great on the surface, as they appear to offer a fresh start or clean slate and possess an encouraging social element because it’s culturally popular and practiced worldwide. However, most people fail at them. Not because they are not earnest in their resolve, but because the focus and attachment are placed on the year (time window construct) and not to their life. There is no reason to wait until the beginning of the year to start pursuing what you want. Again, this is why it is fundamental to know what you want and who you want to become. When you know those things, you will not be waiting for a new year to be upon you before you start actively pursuing your happiness, desires, habits, and fulfillment. While extremely valuable, it’s important to remember that calendars are human constructs (as different civilizations have different calendars and interpretations of time based on the earth, moon and sun cycles, etc.). So, waiting for January 1st to decide to make your life better or go after your dreams is essentially waiting on somebody else’s timeline and moving at someone else’s pace to get what you want. If you are going to be successful in this life, you cannot wait on others (living or dead) to do so. You are not living on anyone else’s timeline or at anyone else’s pace but your own. So, do not work or wait on a generic timeline created for the masses to build your Youniqorn life. As far as you’re concerned, your year begins right now. It doesn’t matter at what point in the calendar year you start or how much of it has already elapsed. The important thing is that you start. Period. Again, what you want this year isn’t about this year. It’s about your life. So, decide how what you want this year fits into not just the year itself, but all the years that are going to come after it. Set lifestyle resolutions. Set you resolutions. Everything you achieve this year should still enhance and improve your life next year, and the year after that, and the year after that. It doesn’t just end with the year, the same way it doesn’t begin with it. Use the universal calendar as your guideline for tracking progress but essentially follow your own calendar and have your own timeline for what you want and what you’re doing to get it (notice how I didn’t say “going to do”). Don’t be the person who ends up tapping out on their resolutions once March comes around. Don’t associate or attach your resolutions (desired habits) with/to this year. While you want to achieve them this year, ideally, they are not habits that belong to the year. They are habits that belong to you.
Get an accountability buddy or partner.
Another huge and extremely vital part of getting what you want this year—and why so many people end up failing at their desired habits and new year resolutions—is because they go at it alone. It is much easier to build a shared desired habit with somebody than by yourself. Team up with someone who has the same/similar mindset of lifestyle over new year resolutions. Someone who thinks of setting their desired habits in terms of their life versus the new year is exponentially more likely to be successful at building those habits because they’re not tying their habits to the year but to themselves. Having somebody with that mindset to hold you accountable and you them in return will not only make your odds at achieving your habits exponentially higher but the process so much more enjoyable, easier, and allow you to be consistently motivated, disciplined, inspired, encouraged, and supported through it. They don’t have to want the same thing(s) as you, but they do need to care about you working toward your desired habits and you need to care about them working toward theirs.
There is a reason we all require support systems in every facet of our lives, whether that be from our parents, our friends, our significant others, our mentors, etc. Having someone to share your desires and journey to achieving them is both necessary and invaluable. Having two or more people to do so is simply priceless. Having a community of like-minded peers who want the same/similar thing(s) and symbiotically support each other’s pursuit of them is so empowering and gives you a level of assurance and validation that you cannot get on your own, especially over the long-term and particularly when self-doubt and frustration creep in. Having someone to lift you up when you feel down, to offer a listening ear when you want to vent, or to offer insight and challenge you to see things from a different perspective or vantage is a crucial part of building the person you want to become. We learn about ourselves the most in the ways we relate to others. Relationships ultimately teach us about ourselves more than the people we have them with. Your accountability buddy will both intentionally and inadvertently teach you so much about yourself you do not currently know and you will also learn a lot about yourself in holding them accountable and stepping into the role of being their supporter, encourager, inspiration, motivation and friend. There is power in giving to others, and being aware of the influence you have and the impact you make in someone else’s journey to achieving their desires (and building the habits required to get them) this year allows you to more objectively see your own value. That is indescribably empowering. There is really no substitute for this. There is just no comparison to working and achieving success by yourself than doing so with others like you. Shared success tastes much, much more savory than solo success—as is the voyage to that success. Connect and constellate with other Youniqorns through the S+ELLAr membership (coming soon) to hold yourself accountable and exponentially increase your odds of achieving everything you want this year. You can also use apps like GetMotivatedBuddies and Supporti.
Do not be afraid to fail.
The oft-touted phrase “failure is not an option” is a complete fallacy and a poor way to encourage success because, in reality, all it encourages is fear. You cannot hinge progress and achievement on being afraid. Any good thing that lasts cannot be founded in fear. But, in a sense, the saying is absolutely correct—just not in the context it is uttered. Failure is not only not an option; it is a requirement. You will fail. Get over it. More importantly, use it to not only propel but catapult you into your success. It is necessary to know what does not work in order to know what does. It is important and necessary to know who you are not in order to know who you are. It is important and necessary to know what you do not want in order to know what you do want. Log your failures and successes in your journal or planner so that you remember both. It’s easy to forget where you stumbled and didn’t prevail as time goes on, particularly when you are past those stages, so it’s important to make it habit to keep track of your failures as well as your successes so that you can learn from them. As they say, we repeat history because we don’t learn from it. It is when you repeat mistakes you’ve already made or continue to practice what you know has not worked over and over that you end up wasting time. When you learn from your mistakes, failures, and shortcomings, your failure goes from being a potential expense to a solid investment and allows you to grow, scale, and flourish. Understand that growth is a temporary surrender of security. Emphasis on temporary. It might feel uncomfortable and scary in the moment, but you will exponentially be better for it in the foreseeable future and certainly down the line over the coming years. Don’t let failure cripple or prevent you from taking action. Don’t let the fear of failing intimidate you or emotionally paralyze you into inaction. The sure-fire way to true failure is not doing anything. That’s what real failure is. It’s not the opposite of succeeding or achieving, it’s choosing or allowing yourself to not do anything. You might as well be dead, because that’s what the dead do: nothing. The only way you can change your life is if you actually take action. Is if you do. Not think about doing but actually doing. Again, this will likely be a lot easier when you work with an accountability partner or a community of like-minded people who will, without a doubt, also have to deal with their own individual failures and endure the process of learning from those failures. You may actually find this encouraging, as it offers a sense of solidarity because you know you’re not alone in your struggles and can both share and work toward a solution for them with someone who supports you. It’s also worth your while to read about other successful people or groups, particularly those you look up to, and learn about all the failures that came before, during and even after they achieved their success. Remember, even massive companies that have attained global reach and success like Google, Disney and Coca-Cola fail. Sometimes correspondingly massively. But it doesn’t stop them from continuing to push forward and create and do. Failure is a part of life. What matters—and determines what happens—from that point is what you do with that failure and how you choose to see and react to it. Remember your failures and make each and every one of them work to push you to get what you want this year.
Move in silence.
This is such an important habit and not everyone understands why. The truth of the matter is, not everyone wants success. For others and even for themselves. Not really. Even when they may think they do. Not in what it actually entails to be successful. Unfortunately, as a result, there are people who will discourage you, intentionally or involuntarily, from actively pursuing what you want this year because of their own limiting beliefs and restrictions they and/or others have put on themselves. This is why it is fundamental to immerse yourself in a community of those who are like-minded and encourage your pursuits and habits. At the same time, limit or avoid sharing your desired habits, targets, and dreams—and your process(es) to getting them—with those who are simply not in the same frame of mind or at that point in their lives yet. It is not your job to get them there and some people may never arrive. That’s just the truth. But again, you’re not living your life according to anyone else’s timeline or pace but yours and you are not responsible for anyone’s mindset but yours. For anyone’s choices but yours. For anyone’s habits and dreams but yours. For anyone else’s happiness but yours. So, do not trumpet your desires and the habits you are building to get them to just any one and certainly not to everyone. If you want to share with those outside your like-minded community, simply lead by example. That is truly the best way. People generally don’t go by what you say. They go by what they see. Again, seeing is believing. A lot of what stifles and prevents people from getting what they want every year is, in fact, other people. Some of us feel guilty for wanting to achieve more than those around us and consequently stifle or hold ourselves back out of a false sense of nobility or modesty so that we don’t stand out from or outshine them. Unfortunately, because these people are often those in your immediate environment, they are usually members of your family and social circle. Again, it is important to not let not only your own fear of failure stop you, but other people’s fear of failure, as well. Energy is truly contagious, and that goes both ways. Positive energy is just as contagious as negative energy and, so, while the positive energy of an accountability buddy and/or like-minded community will push you towards success, the negative energy of doubters and downers will pull you further away from it and away from getting the things you want this year. Keeping your dreams and habits to yourself or limited to those who want to see you win at life also makes things easier because, when you do fail (again, failure is a requirement and part of the process), the negative naysayers will not have the room and opportunity to use that failure to further discourage you or make you feel worse about that failure than you would otherwise. Surround yourself with positivity, optimism, and happiness as often as you can at all costs. Reject negativity and toxicity at all costs. You will be better for it. It’s just always much easier to not say anything than to say something and have to deal with the negative aftermath of spilling your beans. You also save a lot of mental and emotional energy in not having to explain to people (who don’t and/or refuse to get it) what you’re doing or why. Believe me, that gets exhausting really quickly. You also don’t have to deal with people’s natural follow-up inquiries, skepticism and doubts of your process and progress. It may not always be intended to be negative or malicious, and will often come from a place of genuine worry or care, but the impact it has still puts a dampener on your emotions and drive. Remember, intention =/= impact. So, it’s best, again, to move in silence. Stealth is both a skill and a virtue.
Finally, periodicallyreevaluate your progress and habits.
You can choose to do this on a frequency you’re comfortable with, anywhere from weekly to seasonally, in as much or little detail as you require using a Habits Journal or a planner like the Law of Attraction planner. It’s necessary to do this so that you can objectively track what you’re doing, how much time you’re actually putting in, how many repetitions of each habit you’re performing, what’s working and what’s not, and systematically assess your own performance, progress, shortcomings, and insights. It is such a great opportunity for self-reflection, awareness, and growth. Again, writing this down in your ownhandwriting is ideal and will allow you to develop a stronger sense of individuality will and better identify and hone in on your strengths and weaknesses.
Once you adopt and practice all the above recommendations consistently, all you desire is guaranteed to be yours for the taking. So, go forth and take action and get everything you want this year—and the next.