With 2020 behind us (let’s not repeat that) it is time to start making plans for the year ahead. Perhaps it is needless to say, but we live in uncertain times. Our plans should reflect that line of thinking.
Luckily enough, last year was not too bad for me. In fact, it might have been my best year to date. I understand most people are not in the same situation. After thinking about it for a while, I came to understand the reason behind my success: good planning, and some luck.
I’m sure you’ve made new year’s resolutions before. In fact, you might have made your resolutions for this year as well. How did it go last year? Did you achieve your goals? Statistically, people don’t follow through with their end of the year resolutions for too long into the year. The reason for this more often than not is because:
- The promise to action isn’t defined enough (for example, “I’ll get in shape this year!“)
- There is no specific deadline
Following this line of thinking, if you want to get things done, you should set a deadline and a very specific goal to achieve. This actually applies to any plan you make, not just new year’s resolutions, and it’s quite simple really!
Now with the resolutions out of the way, lets move to the actual point of this post. I wanted to give my readers some headers for this year, so that they would get the most out of this year. This way of thinking has helped me in the past, so I’m sure it’ll be useful to someone else out there as well. Let’s go down the list:
1. Focus on things you can directly affect
Do you find yourself being worried about the news or the world’s situation? Perhaps the economy isn’t to your liking? Or maybe there’s a celebrity that you follow that isn’t doing so hot right now.
It may sound a little harsh, but simply put, don’t worry about it! There are plenty of topics to be worried about around the world. These problems might be important and require solving. The question is, can you directly solve these problems? If the answer is no, then you don’t have to worry about it so much.
Instead, focus on things you can directly affect. You, your family and community. All of these are tangible and real, and you can do something about them. Don’t worry about the news, or at least reduce the in-take. It’ll be fine, eventually. Focus on the here and now and make progress.
2. Learn new things
Studying doesn’t end after you finish school. I’m constantly shocked by how many of the people I come in contact with do not read books. It can only help.
It’s much easier to to predict what is going to happen next if you know a little bit of history, even ancient history. Economics and finance helps you with your day-to-day problems. Health and fitness keeps you going in general.
If you are already well-read on the major topics, you should delve deeper into management, social & leadership skills. Learning a new language is also highly recommended. I recommend using textbooks for these.
If you just aren’t fond of reading, or it feels too slow, you should give audiobooks a try. You could also sign up for online courses and work on those on your free time.
3. Taking care of your health
You might have had some difficulty going to the gym as of late. Depending on your situation, you might be carrying a Christmas belly with you as well. Perhaps it would be a good time to start making changes.
This is a cliché new year’s resolution that nobody really keep up with. But what if it wasn’t a new years resolution, but instead an attempt to permanently change your status?
Staying healthy doesn’t require a whole lot. All that you need is a plan to exercise regularly and a diet (diet contributing to 90% of the results).
Study your habits and change them over time. Exercise a little bit every day. Instead of the elevator, perhaps use stairs instead. Small things add up.
4. Your finances matter
Personal finance is one of the most crucial elements of anyone’s life. Yet, most do not have a budget, or its just way too lax.
Using credit cards and buying things you can really afford, because “you must have it now”. This is a road to ruin.
Start by studying personal finance. There are many free videos online about this topic. Track your own spending and create a budget. Learn about investing as well. This could be life changing for you and your family.
5. Seek new experiences
Now this right here might be difficult to implement right now, so it’s going to require some problem solving skills from you.
It doesn’t really matter what you do, as long as its something new. Something to break the norm. You could try painting something. Writing a diary or a blog. Give photography or gardening a try. Unleash your creativity.
Being open-minded is the key here. You’ll never know what you’ll like before you try it. Make it a habit to seek new experiences.