notebook with empty list

Before you know it, the new year will be here. If you don’t purposefully make an effort today to consider your resolutions, goals, and plans for next year, you’ll wonder how it managed to creep up so quickly and then, in no time at all, you’ll wonder how it got to be the middle of January so soon! To be sure that this time, this new year you’re going to be organized, ready, and ahead of the game, here are some things you can do now:

1. Create six lists before the end of this year.

To be a well-balanced, well-rounded individual, it requires more than simply having a great job, or being physically fit, or intellectually stimulated, or spiritually grounded, or financially secure, or personally joyful. It takes all of those, together. So, in preparation for the new year, make a list for each category – finances, academics, health & fitness, spirituality, career, and personal. Under each heading, create a list of what you specifically plan to accomplish (or stop doing) this new year within that category. For example:

Finances

  • Save at least $___ a month.
  • Pay all bills ahead of schedule or on time.
  • Significantly improve credit score.
  • Don’t use more than 10% of credit available on credit cards.

Health & Fitness

  • Join a local fitness facility.
  • Use the facility at least three times a week.
  • Don’t eat past 7 PM.
  • Grocery shop mindfully; don’t buy/eat fast food.
  • Whenever possible, park far and take the stairs.

Academics

  • Research ways you can go back to school to finish your bachelor’s or pursue a master’s degree.
  • Ask the HR Director at work if the company pays for college tuition.
  • Start your degree program in January with the momentum of the new year.
  • Get each week’s coursework done ahead of schedule.
  • Strive to excel in every course.

Spirituality

  • Pray or mediate every morning and every evening.
  • Meet with other like-minded individuals once a week for prayer, services, and celebration.
  • Read something each day (a quote, a passage, a chapter) related to my religion or beliefs.
  • Volunteer at my local place of worship.
  • Let my light shine through my actions and words.

Career

  • Take a close look at where I am compared to where I want to be.
  • Decide if I could be a candidate for a promotion or if I should look for another employer.
  • Identify what interests me most for a career.
  • Look for ways to make processes, procedures, and protocols better at work.
  • Meet and talk with people who are doing professionally what I want to do.

Personal

  • Stay in touch with my extended family on a regular basis.
  • Get organized and minimalize.
  • Leave things better than how I find them.
  • Pay it forward whenever I can.
  • Stay optimistic, hopeful, and positive.

2. Print and posts your lists.

Put your lists somewhere you will see them on a daily basis.

3. Update and revise your lists.

Review your lists and update them as needed.

Create your lists that demonstrate and affirm what’s most important to you.

Instead of waiting until January 1st to decide what you want to accomplish (or stop doing) this new year, think ahead. Create your lists that demonstrate and affirm what’s most important to you. It’s super easy for time to slip away before you know it. Whether you get caught up in watching some reality show, viewing the same movie you’ve already seen three times, or just feel stressed and exhausted from the day’s demands, you can take control of it by writing down what you want and how you plan to go about achieving it. Remember, however, it’s important to be flexible and resilient in life (because “stuff” inevitability happens that we never plan for, count on, or expect). So prepare today for the new year around the corner, and plan how you want to achieve your goals in every facet of your life.

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