When I was growing up in Southeast Asia, New Year’s was a big deal.
Christmas was a big deal, but New Year was an even bigger deal. My family celebrated New Year twice—once on January 1st and another one during the Lunar New Year or Chinese New Year.
My favourite New Year’s memory is my father setting up for the loudest, most spectacular fireworks display right at our front door.
At exactly 12 midnight on December 31st each year, my dad would spend at least 20 minutes curating and firing off the fireworks one by one. Each year, his homemade fireworks display was the highlight of the holiday season. At times I would be awed; at times I would be frightened and ran indoors to hide—but one thing was constant over the years: my dad wanted to ring in the New Year with a bang.
How did you welcome 2018?
What did you need to close or let go in order to fully transition and settle into the New Year?
What visions, dreams and goals are calling to be birthed and nurtured to fruition this year?
Which goals excite you the most? What about those that scare you the most?
Have you allowed them to sit and marinate in your mind and heart?
If you are feeling invigorated and excited about a fresh start… amazing!
And if you are the other half of the population feeling reflective, wanting to cocoon, go inward and regroup, then that is perfectly natural, as well.
Key # 1: Permission to Take a Whole Month to Transition
Here in the Western Hemisphere, the New Year is based on the Gregorian Calendar, which is not fully in alignment with the seasonal rhythms by Mother Nature, or the Lunar Calendar. In the darkness of Winter, our minds, hearts and bodies crave to go inward for a time, in rest and repose, allowing the seeds of new life (new ideas, new projects, new relationships) to take root and be nurtured first before emerging.
It is no wonder in many cultures and traditions, including the Chinese and Persian cultures, the New Year is celebrated and welcomed in February and March as Mother Nature prepares for the arrival of spring.
The gift of the Western New Year being in January is that it allows us a whole month to transition and settle into the New Year. January is the perfect time to tie up loose ends from the previous year, reset, regroup and reflect on the successes and challenges of the previous year, and set mindful intentions on what you want to create this year.
There is no rush. I invite and encourage you to take a whole month to re-vision and get clear on your goals for the year. Even if you have already set goals already, you can refine and tweak them to truly align with what you really want and desire, instead of what you think you should want.
Key # 2: Notice Your Mindset Regarding Business Planning & Goal Setting
Great businesses begin with an inspiring vision set by the Founder based on their true purpose and most cherished values.
Business Planning for the New Year does not have to involve tens of pages of a “business plan”; whether you are a solo start-up or mature business with a large team, keeping business planning and goal setting simple and fun gets you out of overwhelm and into more clarity to take the next action steps.
It’s the New Year, and it’s easy to make New Year’s resolutions or set new goals—but here is the million-dollar question—can you stay the course and be motivated to keep going all year long?
Be honest with yourself:
When you are setting goals, is it coming from a place of “what’s missing” or “what’s wrong” or “what needs to be fixed”? How often do you do this?
Do you find yourself setting too many goals (being an overachiever)?
Or do you find yourself setting goals that are too hard or too complex (hyper functioning)?
Setting goals and achieving them takes more than just writing them down or being “SMART” about them.
It requires consciously removing blocks and obstacles along the way so you can achieve them faster and having way more fun that you ever thought possible.
Instead of setting goals from a place of what’s wrong, what’s missing or what needs to be fixed in your business or organization, go up higher.
Set your sights on a vision of what’s possible (even if you don’t believe it just yet), and ask yourself, “What do I have to do to learn how to get out of my own way? How can I take a bold stand for what I believe in and deep down what I know I can create so that I don’t get in the way?”
Over time, you will discover that you can stop “chasing” whatever it is you want to have in business and in life—you can unleash them instead.
Key # 3: Discover & Apply the One-Page, New SMART Goal Setting Method
By now, you may have heard of “SMART” Goal Setting Method. “SMART” stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-Bound. This is a perfectly good method and model for setting goals, though it only addresses one-half of our brains—the left-brain.
Can you imagine going about your goals utilizing only one-half of your brain capacity?
In North America, there is much emphasis on left-brain power and insufficient attention paid to right-brain power as well as how to bridge the capacities of both sides of the brain. The left-brain is connected to logic, linear thinking, facts and objectivity. The right-brain is connected to emotions, imagination, holistic thinking, and intuition. The right-brain is most connected to the heart, and science now has discovered that the intelligence of the heart is 5,000 times more powerful in connectedness and resonance than the brain.
The good news is you can learn to be SMARTer in setting goals and achieving them by engaging both sides of the brain by discovering and applying the new SMART Goal Setting Method.
Join other conscious CEO’s, business leaders and professionals in the Greater Vancouver region at our upcoming workshop on The One-Page, New “SMART” Goal Setting Method To Set You Up for Success in 2018.
If you live outside of the Greater Vancouver area, stay tuned for the webinar version.
Here’s to a productive, prosperous and fun 2018 for your business and your life!