New Year’s Resolutions That Help You Follow Your Passions

Posted in: Lifestyle

Another year is quickly approaching and it's about time to re-evaluate where we've been and where we want to go in the future.

Focusing on our hopes for the future and where we want to someday be can sometimes seem overwhelming -- I mean, I can barely manage my present life, how am I supposed to map out my future? But by taking the time now to create focused goals and a specific life game plan, it’s easy to tackle each of your dreams one at a time.

Whether it's writing a novel, opening your own business, or getting a promotion, getting organized and disciplined is crucial to your success. To help you get started, we’ve created a step-by-step plan with 10 New Year's resolutions that will help you achieve your dreams in the New Year!


1. Set a Clear Goal

It's important to clearly write down each of your resolutions. Putting a primary goal in writing makes it more real for some people. For example, writing down, "to be managing editor of our local newspaper," or "to open up my own restaurant." After writing down your goal, keep it somewhere where it can be seen on a regular basis, like above your desk or on your desktop screensaver. While you’re at it, tell people about it, too. You’ll find that the more you’re talking and thinking about it, the more it’s on your mind, and the more likely it is that you’ll start working to make it happen.


2. Make a Specific Plan

This is where measurable, time-bound steps come into place. Do you have to go back to school to achieve your passion? Write down each and every class you need to take. Is your dream job online? Write out each step for setting up a personal website that will get you noticed by employers. Small, detail-oriented steps are the clear way to achieve big goals. However, it’s also really important that you put time limits on each of them so you don’t push them back whenever you get busy.


3. Start with Small Steps

Just as losing 50 pounds sounds overwhelming, so does quitting your job and starting your own business. However, losing 5 pounds doesn't sound that bad. Now all you have to do is lose 5 pounds, ten times. After you have set clear goals and established a specific step-by-step plan, the small steps necessary to take are much easier to see. These small steps could include working part time instead of totally quitting your job, or even finding yourself an entry level job that may one today lead to your dream position!


4. Keep a Daily Diary

Whether it's an actual diary, planner, or an app on your phone, look at your goals and what you've actually written out about them on a daily basis. Keep your passion in the forefront of your mind. Make sure your larger goal, as well as the smaller steps needed to achieve it, are written out specifically. It's also a good idea to take down notes regarding how each day went. What did you do right while pursuing your passion on a particular day? What went wrong and why did that happen?


5. Update Your Skills

People who reach their goals and follow their passions are constantly moving forward and improving their skills along the way. This sometimes means furthering your education or going to workshops in the area you hope to find success. It might also mean finding a mentor and following along beside someone else who has succeeded in the field you're in. If you're not sure what you need in this area start by updating your resume. Go online and compare your resume with others in the same field you're interested. It shouldn't take long to figure out which skills and experiences you're lacking.


6. Put in the Time

Whether it's obtaining a dream job, losing weight, or reaching any other type of goal, a certain amount of time needs to be put aside each day for working toward your passion. Even if you're still working full time, a minimum of 1 to 2 hours each day should be committed to working toward your dream. Carving out the time for what you want means cutting things out of your daily schedule that you're doing now. Certain things that are nonessential that don't contribute to your goals need to be eliminated. This might include watching TV, spending too much time on social media, or leisure activities that don't add value to your life.


7. Make the Connections

While it's possible to go it alone and achieve your dreams, it will almost certainly be more difficult. Networking is an often overused and seemingly vague term, but it still applies, especially in today's interconnected world. Make sure to network with others in the area of your passion at least once a month. This could include meeting someone for coffee or joining a professional group that meets for lunch on a regular basis. It could even mean something as simple as updating your LinkedIn profile.


8. Get Fit

This step may not seem to fit in with the others but it's important to long-term success. Being physically fit not only improves your stamina, but your mental prowess and outlook as well. Being in shape means you'll have the physical energy to pursue your dreams and you'll improve your self-esteem as well. This doesn't mean you have to look like a Hollywood celebrity, but being healthy and fit can be a major boost when trying to change your life for the better.


9. Re-evaluate When Necessary

Reaching your goals means maintaining a positive attitude while at the same time remaining realistic. This means anticipating set-backs and failure along the way. This is where many people may give up, lose interest, and fail to keep their eye on the end goal. Flexibility is important at this point. Once a month you should take inventory of where you're at, and make adjustments where needed. If you're getting stuck at this point, go back to number 4.


10. Reward Yourself Along the Way

After evaluating your progress, reward yourself for the small goals and steps along the way that have been reached. Rewarding yourself could mean something as little as taking a day off or buying yourself something special you've been wanting for ages. The key here is to not get lazy and slip away from your primary focus. Be as specific about your rewards as you are about your passion. Reward yourself and then get right back on track.

Starting out with each of these steps is as simple as writing down a sentence that describes your passion and where you want to go with it. What are your New Year's resolutions this year? Are you working towards creating a life that you love in the New Year? Let us know in the comments below!


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