2018 is starting in a way that no other year to date has for me… planned. I mean, it’s not like I’ve never done ANY planning… When I was younger I made resolutions: ‘I’m going to exercise every single day!’ (yah, this girl’s an intermittent gym user at heart, and that combined with lifestyle exercise works best for me), ‘I’m going to keep a pristine home/room/office all year!’ (I swear I could make this one work if I lived alone… and I’m grateful my full house has never allowed me to verify that supposition). More recently I’ve ascribed to the notion of picking a yearly word: a few years ago my word was heart-centered (and the Universe stepped up and stretched, tore and tested my heart massively), and last year my word was self (and I dove-in and created some experiences for my ‘self’… let me tell you), and this year I’ve chosen the word influential (I won’t lie.. it was a heart inspired word that I’m anxious to see the full meaning of).

But, if I’m honest, that was head-in-the-sand, hopeful planning – a sort of wish-and-a-prayer mindset. And I see the value in that- just no longer as the whole plan. I’ve proven to myself many times over that life often unfurls from left-field. The very best opportunities of my life have come from ‘who knows where’ and all they required of me was the willingness to see them for their good and say yes. But 20:20 hindsight has also shown me that they’ve come at times when I was already in motion. That Newton guy was onto something: An object in motion tends to stay in motion and an object at rest is harder to get going. It’s inertia. When I was already in action (say I was working towards goal X), is when I got the opportunity to say yes to something that propelled me faster (sometimes to X-land and very often smack-dab into the centre of Y-ville, which I hadn’t even seen as a possible destination). And when I was in my head planning, wondering, self-talking instead of getting out and just doing – is when there was nothing but crickets coming from the Universal-propulsion-system. I see it like that old truism, ‘if you want something done expeditiously, give it to the busiest person you know’ (because they’re the ones who’re already cranking at full speed).

So, this year, I got myself a brand-spanking new planner (it’s valuable to put pen to paper – the physical act of writing stimulates different areas of the brain). In it I set yearly, quarterly, monthly and weekly goals and I learnt another something interesting about myself: I’m not a ‘big picture’ girl. For me, I can outline the big picture, but I’m better with it staying dreamy and a bit out-of-focus. Too sharp a picture overwhelms and stifles me (it literally sent me into the physical markers of my Sympathetic/‘fight or flight’ system revving too high). I need to play a bit of a trick on myself: I put enough energy into the big picture to see it’s edges but assure myself it’s probably going to be a moved target – in that heading to X and end up loving Y kind of way – by the time I get there. Even backing the process down to the quarterly goals made me a bit squeamish. In this new-found planning process, I discovered monthly and even weekly planning was my comfort zone. These are the road-markers on the way to the quarter, but I can comfortably conceptualize them one at a time, so I allowed myself the grace of only committing the first few to paper. And I’m good with that for a start (dare I even say, excited by it?).

I did something else that a few people I’ve shared it with thought was unique and valuable to adopt for themselves. I broke my weekly goals (and from there my daily goals too) into 3 categories: goals for my business, goals for my house/family, and goals for myself. They are literally 3 separate lists in 3 separate colours (‘cause if you’re going to do it at all, you may as well make it Pinterest pretty, right?)  And my commitment is to make sure that something (even small and routine) moves from to-do to done on each of those 3 lists each day. This is helping me stay faithful to honouring the 3 most important pillars in my life. What was happening prior to this list system was that commitment to 1 or 2 of the areas was leading to procrastination in the other(s). And we know that a tower can only be built as strong as it’s foundational pillars. I want to reach up way tall in 2018, so I’m going to need my foundation pillars to be strong and even.

So, I entered Jan 1 for the first time ever with a concrete-ish plan and we’re now just more than 1-week in. Has it gone smoothly… uh no, adjustments are continually being made. Has it gone more productively than the first week of 2017,16,15… uh yep, and I’m celebrating all the wins along the way. Is it going to need to be refined a million times before Dec 31… uh definitely. Am I completely good with that… (no uh) absolutely!

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