New Year’s Resolutions and making lists

It’s New Year’s Resolution time. If you are still debating whether to set one, then pick up a pen and go for it. If you are wondering how to stick to your resolution, I have one simple tip: write it down.

John Armstrong Photography

The simple act of writing down your resolution will make it far more likely to stick. If you let other people know, that can help too. But ultimately your resolution is for you – a positive change you are determined to make in 2016.

Ever since I was a young boy I have made lists of goals and resolutions. It’s how I make sense of the ideas in my head, the suggestions I receive, and the progress we are making. What’s more, if I didn’t write down all of my ideas and resolutions, I might forget them!

Image from Virgin.com

Here are 10 simple steps for making a list that you will be able to stick to:

1.            Write down every single idea you have. No idea is too small, and no idea is too big either.

2.            Always carry a notebook. You need somewhere to write your ideas down, and while using a folder on your phone is better than nothing, a piece of paper is far more memorable.

3.            Find a list method that works for you. Doodles, bullet-points, charts what suits you best? I I find a combination of short phrases and scribbled pictures works best for me.

4.            Make a list of small, manageable tasks to complete every day. Cut your day up into chunks, and you’ll get lots more done.

5.            Mark off every completed task. There are few more satisfying things than ticking off a job well done.

6.            Make your goals measurable so you know if your plans are working. There’s no point setting targets if you don’t know if you are hitting them.

7.            Set far off, outlandish goals. Resolutions shouldn’t just have short-term endpoints. What do you want to have achieved in five years’ time? How about 50 years?

8.            Include personal goals in your lists, not just business. There’s no real separation between work and life, it’s all just living. The same goes for lists.

9.            Share your goals with others. You can help motivate each other further and hold each other to account. But remember that, in the end, you are doing this for yourself.

10.          Celebrate your successes then make new lists of new goals. The cycle should continue as you make more and more progress. I have boxes and boxes of old notes, filled with old lists, and I’m busy making more.

Image by Greg Hack

My New Year’s Resolution is to complete my 65 Challenges for my 65th birthday before I turn 66. How? By making a list of course, and ticking them off one by one as I go along. I look forward to sharing them as the year goes on. 

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