Post originally appeared on Standard Bank BizCommunity
If you plan on taking ownership of your life in 2017, you need to define your path forward. Otherwise, you might find it difficult to know what’s achievable and what’s not.
History records suggest that the origins of New Year’s resolutions date back 4000 years and although the ritual may have significantly altered in that we now make promises and commitments to ourselves versus to deities – the fundamentals of ‘doing better in the coming year’ remain constant.
So how do we ‘do better’?
The truth about New Year’s resolutions is that 75% of them will, unintentionally, be abandoned by the 8th of January and a mere 46% will push through to the second half of the year. That’s according to an article in Forbes by William Vanderbloem.
So, why the underwhelming success rate? Why do we not follow through or honour the ‘promises’ we make to ourselves? My belief is that unless those resolutions / intentions / goals or promises to ‘do better’ are backed by a deep-rooted sense of purpose, they’re destined to fail.
If you want to give yourself a shot of accomplishing and living the life and creating the business that you (actually) deeply want, answer these questions for yourself, without judgement or over-thinking it:
1. Why are you here?
Discover and connect with your Purpose, your ‘WHY’, on an intrinsic level. Your Purpose serves as ‘thee’blueprint for your life, which naturally affects the trajectory of your life, business, career and the impact you make on a socially responsible scale. Your ‘WHY’ will dictate your beliefs, daily thoughts, actions, behaviours and habits so, for once, your willpower holds no power over you.
2. Are you living authentically?
Based on your daily habits, actions and beliefs, is your life and business aligned with your Purpose? In short, does what you say match up to what you do? If the way you live doesn’t support your beliefs, you’re setting the foundation for failure and are probably frustrated, feel like a fraud and are ‘faking it till you make it’. What you truly believe will dictate your thoughts, beliefs, actions and behaviours. If your actions aren’t going to support your beliefs, you’re setting the foundation for failure.
3. Take action
To paraphrase Mahatma Gandhi: “Your future depends on what you do today.” After all, if you do nothing, nothing will change. It’s your daily habits that shape your life so unless you take action, intentions are merely ‘wish lists’. Make a change where needed – even if it’s just one small decision at a time.
Don’t set yourself up for failure by overshooting what you want to change – start small and incrementally build up momentum from there. Just like we invest time and energy into clearly defining the values, vision and mission for our business, so too should we invest the same, if not more (time, resources, mentoring, coaches, finances) into creating the life we want.
So, change your life and impact others by connecting with your Purpose. Shape your future, your 2017, today.