A new year is upon us! Will this new year just wash over you with whatever it happens to bring, or will your intentional decisions be the force that changes the outcome of the year? What key decisions do you need to make in your life this coming year? Better yet, what is the one significant step you need to take in your life right now to make the new year memorable? If you know the answer, is it something big enough and bold enough that it significantly challenges you? Have you been waiting for the right time, the right opportunity, or even someone else to step in and take action for you on your big idea? I am here to challenge both you and me to make this the year where we take significant intentional action in our lives.
I was recently listening to a successful talk show host explain the benefits of being an entrepreneur and the financial difference he has been able to make in the lives of those who work for him. During the show, a caller asked him when he thought the best time was to start a business, considering the current market conditions and political uncertainty. Without hesitation, the host answered, “the best time is now”. He went on to say that now is always the best time to launch out and create the business you have been dreaming about. I believe this philosophy applies not only to starting a business but to life in general as we really only ever have right now to act.
In the 2018 Walt Disney Pictures film titled Christopher Robin, his childhood friend Winnie-the-Pooh endeavors to teach a now grown-up Christopher Robin how to live in the moment and seize what is right in front of him. In one of his many heart to heart talks with Christopher, he states “Yesterday when I thought about tomorrow, it was too much day for me”. I think what Winnie-the-Pooh was trying to say is that we really only have today to act on the things that matter the most. In another exchange, when Winnie-the-Pooh asks his friend Piglet what day it is, Piglet simply replies “it’s today”. It’s time to seize the moment.
So, what specific action will you take today that will change the outcome of the new year? Is it to improve your health, start a business, invest in a meaningful relationship? If you are not sure, grab some paper and start writing down questions you can then ask yourself that align with the things you are passionate about. Here are some examples.
- Is there a cause or an injustice that I should help address? Example: Have I considered that 12.9% of the world’s population goes to bed hungry every night? World hunger statistics from the Food Aid Foundation.
- Am I surrounding myself with people that inspire me? Example: When I spend time with my close circle of friends (top 3-5), do I come away inspired or drained?
- Is my lifestyle contributing to my long-term health? Example: Are my daily habits improving my health or are they potentially compromising my future quality of life?
- Am I prepared to invest in a meaningful personal relationship with someone? Example: Am I working to develop the very qualities in me that I would value in that special someone I am looking to attract? Am I generous, forgiving, motivated…?
- Can I name the top three mentors in my life? Example: Are there people I admire that directly through personal relationships, or indirectly through podcasts or other training venues feed vision into my life weekly?
- Am I investing in my spiritual well-being? Example: Do I make time in my day for spiritual mediation and inspired reading?
- Is this the year to start my own business? Example: Have I researched the many opportunities the Internet provides for starting a purpose-driven business that has the potential to change thousands of lives?
Pick one item from your list that you are ready to focus on and then answer the following questions.
- What tangible action will I take to see the desired outcome in this area over the next year?
- How will I specifically measure my progress? You can leverage the OKR (Objectives & Key Results) method if you are familiar with this approach.
- Can I do it on my own or will I need coaching (who will keep me accountable)?
- What can I do today to set this plan in motion?
As I walked from work the other day toward the parking garage, I observed a pigeon hop down a long flight of stairs one by one. I found this interesting considering he was perfectly capable of flying, which he demonstrated when I got close enough to him. While he had no internal motivation to fly over the stairs on his own, he did so once he came in contact with an outside force (me). My question to you is, do you sometimes take the stairs in life when you could be flying over them? Are you waiting for an outside force to nudge you into flight? I trust this article motivates you at the beginning of this new year to do what you are already capable of doing, but perhaps currently avoiding. Don’t hop if you know how to fly. Identify the one thing you are going to take action on, write out your plan, and then act because the best time is always now!
Here are links to related resources you might find useful. If you find your life is out of balance, take action today to change that about yourself. I heard it once said, the time is going to pass whether or not you act. Wouldn’t you rather spend that time becoming the person you aspire to be?
P.S. Share in the comments below the one big bold step you are going to challenge yourself with in the new year and don’t forget to subscribe to receive an email notification each time a new blog post is published!