We’ve reached the end of another year. Unfortunately, we’ve also reached a time of cliches and empty promises. Of course this statement doesn’t have to be your predicament. As we enter another year it is very important to reflect on the current year you’re shedding off and the new one you’re about to embrace. I know most people give themselves a long list of goals they want to accomplish but fail to do two things. One, we fail to actually take time to look over the year which is about to past. Two, we tend to give ourselves very unrealistic goals. In our minds they sound like the next best thing but how realistic are the promises you’ve made to yourself and others? It’s important to understand that if your new year’s resolution is not realistic most likely you’ll find yourself in the same place, December 2016, wondering how time passed by. To prevent this here’s a few tips that have helped me:
- Review Session: Take time out of your busy schedule to sit and reminisce on your 2015 Life. What were your highlights? How did these highlights take place? Is it something you can continue to do in 2016? Remember as you think of these things have a journal where you can write these thoughts down. Now take some time to think about your worst moments. What went wrong? Is there something you can do to prevent this from happening in 2016? It’s important to note that while this may sound nice it isn’t easy applying it to your actual lifestyle. Life happens. Excuses are made. You forget. You change your mind. The cycle repeats. Nevertheless, if you want to change this then you have to believe in yourself and your goal. My physics professor, once told our class that you must own your education. I’m telling you “You MUST OWN your Goal!”
- Planning: This is the portion many people tend to avoid, myself included. This is what I usually do. I come up with an amazing idea that I want to do in the next year. Whether it’s attaining my ideal body, or reading the Qur’an everyday, or spending more time with my family; I always have great ideas. But I usually fail at the “how to” part. I wait for everything to just fall into place. While that tends to happen; what do you think would happen if I actually took time to plan. Don’t get me wrong I know that humans make plans and God makes plans and God is the Best of Planners. But God does give us choice. So this year make a plan on how you’re going to achieve your goals or they’ll most likely stay dreams or you’ll just meddle in your goals without putting your full effort into them.
- Work: Warning: this means hard work! But I’ve noticed that once I’ve reviewed my goals and actually plan them out the latter becomes easier to handle. Having a goal is great. It feels great too. But guess what? Feeling great doesn’t get you anywhere. (I’m so optimistic aren’t I?) Now it’s time to sweat and put your plan into action. Maybe you wanted to get more involved in your community. Take time to find out ways to do so. If you’re a part of an organization or a religious institution these can be great sources for you when getting involved. But it takes time, sacrifice, and love for whatever you’re working on.
- Taking a Breather: Make sure you breath. If you feel nervous or overwhelmed remind yourself on why this path is so important to you. Don’t allow your anxiety to stop you from your goal. This is something that I struggle with. I tend to put a lot of effort into my passions but then I let what others have to say, my own insecurities and life get in my way. Don’t allow that to happen to you. Breath in, breath out. Listen to something that gives you Life and get back to where you stopped. I like to write and perform poetry. That’s my breather, what’s yours?
- Score: Have you scored? Are you close to your goal? Your goal is important to you isn’t it? Make sure you track your progress. The worst thing you can do to yourself is waste your time. You can’t get that time back hence, track your progress. I do this by writing a schedule. I then look at my schedule at the end of the week to see if I’ve accomplished or improved in anything.
I hope something I’ve shared with you will help you start your 2016 in the best manner. And if you’re reading this post saying “But I don’t have a goal,” then you have to spend more time with yourself and ask yourself some difficult and uncomfortable questions. Everyone was born with a purpose. (Whether good or bad) Moreover, everyone will have designated stops they must take throughout their lives. It is up to you to find your purpose, make that purpose an actual goal and bring it into reality.