Make Next Year Your Best Year Yet

What do you want to achieve next year?

Or, like the a large majority of the population is this something that hasn’t even crossed your mind? Why on earth would you be thinking about next year, it’s only November and you’ve still got Christmas to get through, and then there’s the holidays and then __________ (fill in the blank based on your situation). I think you’ll get the picture.

Planning is keyGuess What! 

This is exactly why you need to be thinking about next year. Forward planning is one of the KEY INGREDIENTS to being successful, to making your next year your best year yet.

You can apply this to all area’s of your life. 

The great thing about this strategy is you can apply it to all area’s of your life, and depending on who you follow or have studied these may vary slightly but your area’s should look something like this.

7 Areas of Life:

  1. Mental/learning/personal development
  2. Vocational/career/business
  3. Financial
  4. Family
  5. Social
  6. Physical
  7. Spiritual

Because our main readership is business based I’m going to concentrate on that area for this post however think about how having a business impacts on the other area’s and vice-versa.

Remove your maskTo get the most out of this exercise you need to strip off all the masks and peel back all the layers – because we want to establish a solid ‘real’ platform you can use to launch yourself from.

Let’s begin with some questions to get you started

Remember my prompts are business based, but you’ll get the drift and easily be able to answer these same questions for other areas of your life too.

What have I achieved in the last 12 months?

When answering this question don’t just look at how much money you’ve made (or not made). Look at things like how many contacts you’ve made, how engaged your connections are, how much interaction you have with them, what networks have you joined, new skills learnt etc etc.   

What hasn’t worked in the last 12 months?

Perhaps you made a decision to journal daily, to blog weekly or to attend a new networking event every month. Or you’ve been running the same ad all year and still haven’t had a call from it. I know this sounds extreme but it does happen.

This is the list you need to get real with; because this is where some of your opportunities lay.

What are my limitations and how can I overcome them?

Another big question, I know! I never promised this was going to be easy. Looking back over the last 12 months where are your limitations? Have you been focussed and on task or do you tend to fly by the seat of your pants? Did you have a list of goals to achieve and have you achieved them (or will you by the date you set)? Are you promoting yourself as well as you could be? Do you know who your ideal client is and where they hang out (online and offline)? Do you need help with some of the tech stuff so you can concentrate on what you do best? It’s important that you get really real with this question – think about tasks you’ve had on your to-do-list that you never get around to, or tasks you know you really should be doing but you just can’t bring yourself to do (and yet you’ve got plenty of time to watch the latest videos in the Facebook news feed or a full series of Greys Anatomy).

What things do I really love doing?

Make a list of all the things you really love doing – big and small. Perhaps you love working one to one with clients, perhaps you love creating content, perhaps you love public speaking, perhaps you love IT, perhaps you love being able to work around your kids schedules. If you find this list getting too big, consider grouping things – there is only so much you can do.

What things do I really hate doing?

Again, make a list of all the things you really hate doing – big and small. Perhaps you hate having to find new clients all the time, perhaps you hate doing your books, perhaps you hate IT, perhaps you hate the idea of delegating.

I’m not asking you to create this list so you can just forget it, because when you are in business – and this applies across all areas of life – some things are mandatory and must be done. By acknowledging how you feel about something gives you the opportunity to alter the emotion, with a simple tweak. When you see something as a task that must be done for you to achieve your goal – and your goal is significant enough – then it changes how you view it.   

What do I want to achieve in the next 12 months?

Now it’s time to set yourself some goals. How much money do you want to make next year? How many clients do you need to see to achieve that? Do you want to work full time, part time, online, face to face, one to one, in groups? Is there someone you would like to work alongside, perhaps write a column for their website or magazine, whose stage would you like to present on? What skills do you want to develop? Do you want to create your own podcast, you-tube channel, new product, perhaps you want to write or Scope every day? Is there a book you’ve been thinking about writing?

Think about what really drives you, take your answers from questions 1 – 5 into account and come up with a list of around 10 goals you want to achieve next year.

Now isn’t the time to play small, dream big. What is it that you really want to do?

Dream big

Write your goals down. 

Committing them to paper means you are far more likely to achieve them. The second part to this is sharing them with someone else, so find an accountability buddy you can exchange goals with. If you can’t find anyone send me a message, and I’ll hold you accountable.

How to make sure you achieve your goals.

When you’ve got your list I want you to circle the top 3 – what 3 goals are you going to concentrate on and achieve first. What 3 goals are going to have the greatest impact on you and your business moving forward?

Stop procrastinatingNow pick 1 – what 1 goal are you going to work on first? Don’t rush into this decision but don’t procrastinate over it for too long either. You’ve got to make a decision, and in all honesty if you’re struggling to pick one then you really need to have another look at your list.

If you’re being completely honest with yourself about what you want to achieve then your top 3 goals should be jumping out at you. It’s worth mentioning here, this is your business list so if you are truly struggling with your goals look at the other areas of your life and see where your attention is focussed. Perhaps there is something else going on right now that needs more of your attention. Or perhaps there isn’t and you’re feeling stuck, scared, overwhelmed, afraid to commit your dreams to paper, afraid of success perhaps, or failure. Whatever the reason now is the time to acknowledge it, because until you do, you will continue to repeat patterns and habits that may not be serving you as well as you’d like.

This is a whole other article so I’m going to sign off and pick up from here next week.

In the meantime put an hour or 3 aside, sit down with no distractions what-so-ever and answer the questions above. If you’re just starting out you may not have complete answers to 1 – 3 but you can answer the rest.

If you are genuinely serious about making next year your best yet you need to start planning now, and your list of goals is the first step. Once you’ve got your list, you’ve got direction and when you’ve got a direction you can plan.

Click here for Part 2 – it covers how to make sure you achieve your goals.

About The Author

Elly Hurley

Elly is a Co-Founder of Nudge Marketing, a marketing training company owned and run by women showing small business owners how to grow their business by driving traffic, generating leads and building automated marketing funnels to sell their services and products. As a Certified Digital Marketing Professional, Ontraport Certified Consultant and an NLP Trainer, Elly offers a holistic approach to business - possessing both the technical and behavioural knowledge required in this digital age. Visiting Facebook HQ and signing the wall is on her Bucket List.

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