Resolution 2019

New Year Resolution. Number 1: Be more awesome than last year.

We are knee deep into the second month of 2019, with a lot of us asking ourselves exactly where January vanished to. Another thing that seems to keep vanishing with the month of January are the resolutions we've set that are meant to leave us feeling happy, accomplished and successful at the end of the year. The setting of resolutions is the easy part; the execution leaves a lot to be said. It’s always interesting to hear the different opinions of young people around the issue of resolutions; with some believing that the "new year, new me" is just a waste of words that could have been used for something else. For some young people, like me, the setting of these resolutions is important because they are a sign of seeking improvement in one’s life. The Japanese have a very cool philosophy they call Kaizen, which, in simple terms, is a process of continuous improvement. The importance of constantly seeking improvement cannot be downplayed as the minute one stops seeking improvement complacency and stagnation are birthed. I don't think anyone has the answers to what every individual person can do to ensure that their goals stick beyond the month of January; however, I have found multiple ways that I believe might bear fruitful results.

The first thing to consider would be constantly revisiting your goals for a review on progress and cutting what is not needed anymore. By constantly looking at the goals you will be reminded of the work that needs to be put in and the deadlines you’ve set for them. Most of us have set goals and forgotten about them, only to remember them late into the month of December when we set goals for the next year. Psychology has also proven that there are higher chances of achieving a goal when it is clearly written down and constantly visited. The constant review initiates a process of encoding, where information is analyzed and stored in the long-term memory of the brain. Another good visual source of inspiration that you can use is a vision board, and thanks to technology you can build one on an app and keep it on your phone to constantly see it. (For some apps that can assist you click on this)

The second step would be to break down your goals into quarterly goals, and further down to monthly goals with action steps. Sometimes a goal seems too big to be achieved when setting it because it being achieved in its bulk form seems nearly impossible. For example, if you are a student planning on saving $1,000 by the end of the year to spend on a couple technology gadgets, it would be best that you cut it down to $250 per quarter of the year, and about $84 per month. An $84 goal seems far more reachable than a $1000 goal. You could look at the daily spending habits you have that can be cut off in order to save money. I have found that we spend too much money on things and habits that hold us back from reaching our financial goals; the daily cup of coffee, the daily take-outs that could be replaced with a home meal and so much more. This does not only apply to financial goals but can be applied to all kinds of goals.

The third and last step is to have confidence in yourself and your abilities. A lack of belief will have you not believing that you can reach your goals, and that will just make the whole process harder than it should be. It’s important to enjoy the process of achieving your goals, through the sacrifices and the struggles of the journey your confidence will be your carrier.

May 2019 be the best year of your life thus far, filled with success, joy and peace. If you have not started, start now.

I would really like us to engage on this more and on other things on Twitter: @tshepiso_mokate

South Africa