Here we are again at the start of a brand-new year. An empty calendar/planner lays before us just waiting to be filled. There’s something about those empty spaces that excites me. Perhaps it’s the thought of all the potential that lies ahead. The what-could-be instead of the what-might-have-been.
In case you can’t tell, I’m an optimist. However, I’m also a realist, which means I’m not about to dive into a new year simply hoping for the best. No, I need some sort of a plan, no matter how loose it might be. Like a map that points me in the right direction while giving me the freedom to enjoy the scenery along the way.
Instead of New Year’s resolutions, I prefer to set goals for the coming year. Things I’d like to accomplish or improve upon. I’ve found the best place for me to keep track of those goals is in my very simple weekly/monthly planner. There are pages at the back for notes and that very last page is the perfect place to write out those goals, so I always know where to find them. And I will want to find them because they’ll be an integral part of planning for the next year. Come on, I’ll show you what I mean.
Revisit – Before I get started with my goals for the coming year, I need to look back at those from last year to see how I did. Armed with a pen and my new calendar/planner, I sit down with my previous one and look back at what I set out to achieve the year prior. The things I accomplished, I cross off the list and give myself a little high-five. It’s a rare occasion when I’m able to checkoff everything, though. Sometimes I even find myself wondering what I was thinking when I wrote something down. That’s when it’s time to…
Of course, there are some things that are out of our control, so be realistic. Your goal may be to get a book contract, but that’s not something you have control over. However, there are things you can do to improve your writing/storytelling so that you have a better chance of receiving that elusive contract.
Restart – Once you have your list, no matter how short or long it might be, you’re ready to embark on your journey. Your map is set out before you, though you can always add or delete a few stops along the way because as we all know, life happens. Just don’t give up. Because even if you only achieve one goal, it’s an accomplishment that should be celebrated.
What are your goals for 2022? Perhaps you want to finally clean out that closet that’s been a catchall for too many years. Maybe you want to finish the manuscript for that story that’s been floating around your brain forever. Is there a bad habit you’d like to break? Or maybe you’d like to learn how to make a meme. Whatever it is, write it down and revisit it often. Reflect on why you wanted to do that. Revamp things as needed. And remember, it’s never too late to restart and set yourself on the path to a better you. The you God has called you to be.