J 2.0

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It’s January where traditionally I create a new resolution booklet – yes a booklet – filled with the familiar headings and under each heading a list of, more depressingly, familiar goals and instructions on how to succeed.

This always leads to a kind of bottleneck, where I try to do everything at the same time and after about a week I’m exhausted from my rigorous exercise program, starving from my restrictive eating plan and broke from trying to create the “stylish new me” despite my involved financial budget and savings plan.

This isn’t working so something has to change.

Magazines and other media are telling me that it is bad for me to set such lofty goals as this has a negative impact when I inevitably fail, and instead perhaps this year my resolution should be one of acceptance or to be kinder to myself.

In my opinion, to not even try is much worse than failing!  Acceptance??  What?! am I suppose to just say, this is all I will ever be?

Neither of these approaches work for me.  However, I think I have an idea!

Instead of trying to change everything all at once, just tackle those goals one at a time until they are integrated, internalised, habit, second nature.

So the first goal is some personal admin of the mind.  I’m going to have a think about who I am, where I have been and what has made me into this version of me right now.  (One of the things I already know about myself is that too much introspection is very bad for me! so I will not spend too long on this exercise)  Then I’m going to have a think about where I am going, where I want to go and what that version of me will be like. 

This is one of my favourite exercises.  I learned this reading Stephen Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.

Imagine it is 5 years from now and you going to a social gathering.  You get yourself ready and head to the venue.  You arrive and see that all your family, friends, co-workers and people from your community are there.  You then come to realisation that this is your funeral and a key member of your family stands in front of everyone and begins to talk about you.  They reminisce and talk about what kind of person you were, what qualities you had and achievements you made.  Next a friend stands up and talks about what kind of friend you were.  Then a co-worker stands up and tells everyone what kind of person you were at work and your achievements and successes there.  Finally a person from your community or other group you are involved in that gives some kind of service stands up and they tell everyone what kind of contributions you made or of your involvement.

This exercise gives a good template for who you are, the best version of yourself, and of where you want to be heading.  It gives you insight into your values and of what matters most to you and these are the things you should be giving the most of your time to.

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