Rational Personal Development and Business Training
5 Tips For Staying On Track With Your New Year’s Resolutions
Do you have big goals for this year? Maybe you’ve decided this is the year to earn a six-figure income? Or 7-figures? Or you’re going to start a business? Or pay off all your debts. Or quit your job.
They’re all great choices! I believe you can do it.
The problem is that a lot of people are already struggling to stay on track. It’s one of the reasons why only 8% of people achieve their New Year’s Resolutions. (Univ. of Scranton)
So, if you’re already struggling with your New Year’s Resolutions, let me offer you some tips that will assist you.
#1 Stop Setting Goals
Yes, I know. That’s the opposite of everything you’ve read in Think and Grow Rich and seen on “The Secret”. The idea of “you have to have a goal” is so prevalent that it looks sacrilegious to say, “don’t set goals”.
But, the fact is that a lot of the reason you don’t get what you want is because most goal-setting is flawed for a lot of reasons.
ONE of those reasons is that people tend to set goals for things they have no control over.
For instance, let’s say your goal is to sell 50,000 copies of your new book. That would be great, right? Sure!
The problem is that you can’t control that outcome. Your “goal” depends on the actions of 50,000 other people.
That kind of goal-setting doesn’t work. And it leads to a lot of frustration. Fortunately, there’s a workaround…
#2 Focus On Processes Instead
Processes are the daily activities that move you forward in a given area.
If you want to increase your business revenue, the process for that is sales and marketing.
If you want to have a book on Amazon, the process for that is to write daily.
If you want to become a black-belt in Tae Kwon Do, the process for that is to show up to class every week and learn the forms.
Here’s the cool question that James Clear poses: if you did NOT have a goal but you did the processes…wouldn’t you still wind up with the same result?
Here’s a recent example from my own life…
I never had a goal to be a photographer. I just saw pictures that I liked and thought it’d be cool to be able to shoot pictures for my own enjoyment. So I bought a good camera and started carrying it with me everywhere I went. And I’d just shoot pictures of anything. A sign. My family eating lunch. A bird.
I started paying attention to the photos I saw other people taking and I tried to figure out what I liked about them. And I just kept shooting hundreds of useless pictures.
Then they started getting better. Then a few turned out really nice. Then people started asking if I would take pictures of them or their kids or their dog or whatever. Last month, I had 7 different people ask me if I ever did photo shoots for clients. I wound up doing one yesterday. It was a lot of fun and the pictures turned out well.
I never set a goal for this. I just thought it would be great to be able to take good pictures whenever I wanted. I just kept showing up and working on it a little every day.
It works the same way with anything. Fall in love with the PROCESS. And that’s the nice thing about processes. If you show up consistently in a process, you often wind up pretty darn close to where you wanted to be.
#3 Be Certain What You THINK You Want Is What You ACTUALLY Want
A lot of people put things on their goal-list because they think they’re supposed to want it. I see a lot of people do this. They put things on their list like:
A luxurious mansion in the nicest part of town
a house in the Caribbean
a garage full of luxury automobiles
a private jet
closets full of designer clothes
ginormous diamond earrings
luxury vacations every 30 days
a private chef
And then the interesting thing is that they find out (hopefully, in time,) they don’t actually want all those things.
See, the problem is that you don’t know what you don’t know. When you’re broke and struggling, you don’t know what it’s like to wake up every day to tons of money in your bank account. So you can only imagine what that would be like. And we fuel our imaginations by looking at what OTHER people do when they have that kind of money. But the problem is that you don’t actually see how millionaires live. You usually only see how celebrity millionaires live. And then we wind up taking our cues from that.
In other words, you tend to put those things on your list because you think that’s what a wealthy person does. Not because you actually want it.
I’ve done that. Recently, I found one of my “Goal-Lists” from 16+ years ago. One of the things listed was “A house on the Turks and Caicos Islands”. I just laughed when I read that. Because, I hate being hot. I hate humidity. I hate sand in my shoes. I hate hurricanes. So, why on earth would I put a house on my goal-list that’s surrounded by all those things?
Who knows? I probably saw a Travel Channel show about the T&C Islands and thought that it sounded like a wealthy thing to aspire to do.
It’s easy to get caught up in thinking that there are things you’re “supposed” to want. There aren’t. You want what you want. Don’t spend your time thinking about what you’re “supposed” to want.
The worst thing imaginable would be to get to the top of the ladder and to discover that it’s leaning against the wrong wall.
#4 Forget The Idea Of A Total Makeover
Another big mistake that we make, especially at New Year’s, is that we’re going to change everything at once.
We’re going to quit their job…
AND drop 40 pounds…
AND start a new business…
AND quit smoking…
AND write a book…
AND learn to paint…
Result? A massive, ugly, nasty case of failure and disappointment.
See, the fact is that we don’t have the time or attention to focus on making huge changes in every area of your life. There’s quite a bit of science around this.
Have you ever heard of “decision fatigue”? The basic idea is that every decision you make has a mental price-tag. The more decisions you have to make in a day, the less likely you are to make GOOD, deliberate decisions.
For instance, Steve Jobs wore the same outfit every day. Always a black, long-sleeved T-shirt, Levi jeans and New Balance sneakers. Why? Because by choosing to wear the same outfit every day, that’s at LEAST four decisions he doesn’t have to make. Which means he was more equipped to handle the important decisions he had to make later in the day.
The simple fact is that you don’t have the time, attention or mental acuity to focus on making massive changes in every area of your life simultaneously. You wind up expending all your mental resources on too many objectives. It’s like juggling. You’ve got too many “balls in the air”. Something will get dropped. Drop enough balls and you wind up thinking, “What’s the point of trying? I can’t do this,” and you’ll quit.
This is where processes come in.
For instance, when I decided to quit my job and run my own company from home, I committed to sending ONE email per day to my subscribers. Sure, there were other things that I needed to do in my business, too. But that was one thing that I knew I could do every single day without fail. And so I started there.
I didn’t say, “Hey, I’m going to write an email AND shoot a video AND write a blog post AND make 5 social media posts AND work on my new product AND do a web class AND write a new sales letter AND create a new sales funnel, etc. etc.”
That’s how people crash. They try to do too much.
Sometimes you CAN do what I call “bundling”. It’s where you tackle two things at once. For instance, increasing your income AND saving money is a powerful combo. You won’t believe how fast you can improve your net-worth if you “bundle” both those processes together.
But the main thing is to make sure you’re not exhausting your mental reserves by trying to do everything at once. Play big. But play smart.
#5 Stop Doing It all By Yourself
The real trick is clearing out all the garbage that you’ve got in your mind about what it takes to actually become wealthy. It’s absolutely REQUIRED if you want to change your life quickly. Otherwise, you wind up doing everything by trial-and-error and wasting lots of time and energy.
The problem is that “finding out what you don’t know about money” is a tricky thing to do by yourself. The very nature of struggle and poverty is not being able to see what you need to see. It’s almost impossible for a person who can’t see something to teach themselves how to see it.
If you know that you want to get on the right track financially and see significant and measurable changes in your bank account, that’s where I come in.
My one-on-one coaching program is completely booked but the Making Friends With Money™ Course and Mastermind is the best choice for creating a financial transformation in your life.
You’ll get nearly 20 hours of video lessons on how to get from where you are…to where you want to go. And with our private mastermind group, I’m there to answer any questions you have and help you move forward, one step at a time.