Here we are in January, the new year a blank slate ahead of us. You’ve set your intentions for the new year, but have you thought not only about what you want, but also about what you need to do to realize your dreams?
Any time you want to bring about change in your life, the first step is to identify your objective. Objectives are the over arching themes for what you want to achieve. Let’s imagine a woman named Jane. Her objective is to have more money in savings. This is an idea, not a plan, it lacks urgency, momentum, and clarity.
Unlike an objective, a goal is measurable in space and time. How much, and by when? Without these metrics, your goal will always be “someday” and, to quote John Fogerty ,“Someday never comes.”
To continue with our imaginary friend Jane, a goal to help her reach her objective might be, “to have $5,000 in savings by October 1, 2018”. That goal is well-defined and measurable by Jane or anyone else. There is no room for ambiguity. Either her bank statement shows $5,000 on October 1, 2018 or it doesn’t. Either she has reached her goal or not. Your goal may be to change careers, overcome a health issue, take a trip, find love...it doesn’t matter. The same questions always apply: How much? and By when?
When you have quantified your goals, you need to write them down and remind yourself of them daily. This process activates your subconscious to seek ways to close the gap between your current reality and the goal you are working to achieve. Once you do this, you’ll be amazed at how often you perceive little reminders that you’re on the right path!
Determining and Taking Action Steps
After clarifying objectives and defining quantifiable goals, the next step is to identify and follow through on daily action steps that will bring you closer to the reality you desire. One effective guideline is the “Rule of Five.” Resolve to take five action steps per day. They might be the same 5 each day, or they might vary day to day. They might be “baby action steps,” but each one is moving you forward on the path to success.
Let’s return to Jane. She has determined that she wants to enjoy more security by having a larger amount of money in her savings account. How is she going to make that happen? Possibilities for Jane’s daily action steps include:
attending a free money management talk at her local library
reading one chapter per day in a financial planning book
meeting a friend for a hike instead of for lunch or shopping
making her daily coffee at home each morning instead of spending $5 per day at a coffee shop
To see the power of daily action, this change alone could give her $1,825 in the bank in 1 year (more than 1/3 of the way to her goal) if she consciously saves that $5 per day. If her action step one day each week is to consciously choose a free activity such as a walk or hike with a friend over going out to lunch (at $20 a person with tax and tip), that could potentially give her another $1040 per year. Small daily action adds up to big impact even though each step may seem insignificant on its own.
So, now you know how Jane is going to change her life. What about you? What do you want to manifest in 2018? How are you going to make it happen? Change isn’t easy. I can help. Call or Email me to set up an initial consultation.