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I found it funny to see how crowded the gym was during the first days in January, compared to December. Many people were starting the year wanting to get skinnier, healthier, in better shape… and I am sure the NY list of wishes continues. We see the year as a new start and a chance to have a better, different life, like the change of the last number(s) of the calendar year has this power over us.

Don’t get me wrong, I like putting down resolutions and checking them out at the end of the year. I even had 1001 things to accomplish in the next 1001 days (that’s close to 3 years), or an objectives agenda I kept track of every day, or an Excel or Asana with the goals split into monthly achievements and daily tasks… so yes, I am a gullible expert into all this. 

And I want to ask you – we’re now well into 2021. How many of the things you put on the resolution list you’re still following after only a few weeks? Yes, that’s what I am talking about. You’re most probably not following them anymore, or at least not all of them (and it doesn’t matter why). Congratulations if you’re still on track – I know people like that exist!

So, while I firmly believe we’re just setting unrealistic resolutions during New Year’s, how about we think a tad differently. I’d suggest having a super-big vision or goal, and then short(er)-terms goals that you can achieve, that you can then pivot and change as the world changes. Let me get into details; follow along!

Life vision

I’m not talking here about your life’s meaning, which is an entirely different story. What I’m referring to is a direction towards where you’re headed. It can be your life meaning but doesn’t have to. It’s ok to just know where you’d want to be in a few years, in one or more areas of your life.

So, what’s your life direction? Those audacious goals that make you wake up early or feel excited when only thinking about them? It can be on the business side, a career goal, getting the job you want, or on the personal side, finish University, find someone, buy a house, get healthy, etc. Don’t think about HOW you’re going to get there. Just train your mind as to where you’re heading.

If you really want to, it can fit into the calendar year and set your life vision for the next year. Though I would go for something bigger that puts your mind into seeing the things beyond one year. What’s that something that you really really want to get to in the next, say 3 to 5 years?

Short-term goals

Then, once you’re set with the big life vision, sit down and think about what you need to do now and in the next few months to get closer to your goal. This approach’s beauty is that you don’t need to be right in your assumptions; take it as a test and learn what works. But think and write a few concrete goals you want to achieve in the short run to get you closer to your life vision.

In a few months, and no longer than that, revise this list. Tick off the accomplishments – good job! For the rest, ask yourself if the things in there are still worth continuing, and if they are, then continue working on them. If not, learn from it and think about what you need to change and improve or test to make it work. Revise the short-term goals you want to achieve in the next period or develop a new list, whatever is the case.

The good thing about this is that it allows you to pivot without feeling guilty, without feeling like you’re unable to make a plan that works or stick to this plan. It will enable you to adjust to what’s happening in the world, as the world changes fast, and to new ideas you might have, while keeping you on track – you have your life vision set in stone.

These short-term goals can be tight to a calendar year if you’re absolutely sure that it needs that long of a time frame to accomplish. Never say never, right? But pay attention to these – and keep in mind things can change anytime, so don’t be too harsh on yourself if they do. 

So yes, New Year’s resolutions. A fun time to ponder over the last year’s accomplishments and think ahead, for sure. Enjoy it but give it a twist, and go back to those goals more often during the year, so you actually give them a real chance of becoming a reality. 

If you have any questions, suggestions, feedback, or want me to tackle a particular topic, leave a comment below or send me a message via my social networks (follow the icons below to get there). Thank you for reading; I hope it was useful and fun!