Would you like to make 2019 a remarkable year for you?
A new year has begun. It’s is as exciting and fresh as the first day of school and a brand new lunchbox. You’re past those school days, of course, but you aren’t past embracing the new and possibilities to recharge your job or career this year.
As a career and life coach, I help people set — and more importantly — achieve life-changing goals. It’s what I do: identify what isn’t working, clarify what could be better and help people pursue a life they’d rather lead. I’d love to help you make 2019 a remarkable year.
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A 2018 calendar, filled out (or your memories of 2018 fresh in your mind)
A 2019 calendar, fresh and new
Blank paper (or a Word doc if you’re more of a computer person)
What you’ll get: A remarkable year.
There are five parts to this exercise — reflection, selection, envisioning, planning and sharing. Here’s how it works:
For this part, pull out that 2018 calendar if you have it or rely on your memory.
Write down the names of the months on three pieces of paper. Put four months down on a page, in separate quadrants. January, February, March, April on one, May, June July, August on another and September, October, November and December on the last page.
Now, review 2018 month by month. Let’s start with the trips you’ve taken. Where did you go, in which month? Short trips, overnights and longer trips. Write them down on the calendar.
Next: were there any landmark events for you? A new job, a promotion, weddings, graduations, births and deaths? What big events happened in your life, and the life of loved ones?
Sit with this for a while, as you start remembering one thing, which leads to another. As you start filling up the months, you may realize that you need more pages. Enjoy the memory trip.
You’re ready for phase two.
Once you’ve got a thick set of memories from 2018, take out another piece of paper. On one side, write “coming” and on the other side write “leaving.”
Imagine that you are packing your bag for 2019, and you can choose five things that come with you, and five things you’d like to leave behind. Maybe you hired a terrible contractor last year; leave him or her in the past. More importantly, what incredible things happened? New relationships or experiences that you could pick as the “best of” 2018?
Keep that list of five things you treasured from 2018 and want to bring with you and five things you’d prefer to leave behind.
You’ve just taken stock of 2018 and my guess is that it was more extensive and powerful than you may had remembered. So many things happened. And 2019 will be the same. Right now, you can choose those things.
Look at your top five treasures from 2018. If you were to elevate these, build on the joy they delivered and create even more joy, how could you do that? How could you plan that into the coming year? If you improved your health, how could you celebrate that or take that to the next level? If you became closer to an old friend, is there a new old friend you’d like to connect with this year?
Write it down. Acknowledge and elevate your top achievements from 2018.
Is there something missing that you’d like to be sure to add to this year? Think about what that would be
Maybe you’d like to start meditating more, or get off medications that you think are slowing you down.
Maybe you’d like to travel more, or nest more. This is your life; your choice.
Write it down. Add new goals for 2019.
Next, look at the four seasons and the month at the center of each: February, May, July and October. When you think of these seasons, what do you love most? Is it apple picking in October, and the beach in July? How can you embrace the upcoming season with a new or well-loved experience or person you’d like to have in the center of the season? What is the treasure you’d like to look forward to?
Write it down. Make sure to add your favorite parts of the year to 2019.
Now take out that 2019 calendar. What is already in place? Have you booked any travel already? When is your birthday? Any upcoming weddings, graduations or other events? Put those on the calendar.
Your 2019 treasure map is starting to take shape.
And now (drumroll please)… add in those extras: those bigger dreams and seasonal joys. Add in the items you identified in the “envisioning” phase. If you can dream it, you can build it. You’ve dreamt it, so put it on the calendar.
Have fun with this. You may find there’s too much to do in one year; some items may need to wait until 2020. Others that seemed important may not seem as urgent now that you’ve raised your game, so they can be replaced.
Onto Sharing. This is where the rubber meets the road. It’s time to share your dreams and your calendar with your friends and family members. Make a list of the top five items you want to do this year (that you’ve always done) and top five new objectives (that you’ve never done). Identify something, each month that you are looking forward to doing.
On the first of the month, announce the thing that you’re excited about. You may be telling your loved ones, but what you’re REALLY doing is telling yourself, reminding yourself how sweet your life is, and then sucking every last bit of sweet off your finger tips.
You have now created a treasure map for 2019 of the things you’d most like to do. Pursue that treasure. You’ve created a powerful vision. It can be as remarkable as you let it be.