What are you hoping, wishing, planning, dreaming, designing, choosing and acting on this year? If you can answer this clearly and succinctly, what are you waiting for? You could skim read this to make sure you’ve got everything covered, but I expect there are lots of things you want to be doing right now. Off you go!
If you are still thinking about your answer and it takes a while to describe, or you’re not sure or confused about conflicting elements, or downcast at seeming blocks in your path, read on:
First of all, pick your time for goal setting, resolution-making, up-gearing and action-taking – it’s essential that all these things are well-timed. Maybe New Year’s Day is a good time for you, or maybe a bit further along, in the Spring, when the longer, brighter days start lifting your spirits and everything starts into budding, growing wonderfulness around you.
Now – let’s say you are at your right planning time, what you need to design are well-filled outcomes. This means they need to be rich, detailed, juicy, bright, sparkly and amazing. They need to look good, sound good and feel good to you, as a whole and in detail.
Do you know what I mean?
You must WANT them and be able to IMAGINE them, in DETAIL. If you can’t because of – whatever – then what you need is to fill your well first.
Filling your well is all about gathering in new creative input: inspiration. This expression lovely ideas for doing this, comes from Julia Cameron, author of “The Artist’s Way“.
The way you do it, is to give yourself the gift of some “me-time” and you enjoy it in the company of yourself doing something creative and new, such as spending a couple of hours in an art gallery, stretching your musical appreciation at a different kind of concert, sky-diving, taking a class in pottery or sculpture, or maybe as simple as looking through a variety of magazines around one subject, whether home, garden, art, sport or whatever catches your eye.
After this few hours, half day, day or however long you give yourself in one or more sessions of well-filling, you can return to thinking about your aims, plans or goals.
Allow some undisturbed time for this and just write a list of all the things you would like to be doing, seeing, hearing and having in 2010 and beyond. Write – or draw, if you prefer – as many of these as you like. Include photos or magazine pictures if you’ve found one that represents or symbolises what you want.
The only rule for this is that they all have to be things you want and feel great about. It does not matter whether they seem possible, or whether you have any ideas how to achieve them. If you really want them and feel great about them, you will be well-fuelled with motivation and energy to take action and find the ways to make them happen!
You are allowed to set them to one side and “sleep on it” – let them incubate for a while, and then have another look and add anything else you want to add, or remove anything you decide you don’t really want after all. A good test of this, is to check at this point how you would feel if all these things are now definitely going to happen.
This is also a good time to check that your well-filled outcomes are also well-formed outcomes, ie. ecological. If you are unfamiliar with this term, which arose from NLP training (Neuro Linguistic Programming) it refers to a comprehensive ecology check-list, and you can read all about it here.
When your list of wants, wishes, resolutions, aims, goals, or how ever you call them, is complete – put it in a sealed envelope and put it away out of sight. You are not allowed to look at it again until – well, if this is your first time doing it this way – until a quarter of a year has passed. Put a date in your calendar and in 3 months time, get your list, pictures, mind maps and all out again and have a good look through them.
You will learn some interesting things and from your experience, you could then re-do this process for a longer period of time, if you want. This process is something I do myself, and I find it very rewarding; I expect you will too, and I look forward to hearing about your results!