It may be October, but there is still plenty of time to make significant strides in work, life and love before the year’s up and see those pesky New Year's resolutions through to fruition.
Whether you’re looking for a leg up on the career ladder, want to boost your self-esteem or want to become healthier, we asked Clinical Hypnotherapist and Confidence and Intuitive Coach Annie Ashdown for her 10-step action plan for living and loving the life you lead this year and beyond. “Many begin the year full of enthusiasm around setting goals, yet fail to maintain momentum throughout the year,” says Annie. “If you haven’t achieved what you set out to for 2016, don’t lose hope and let your goals fall by the wayside. Get crystal clear on what you want to achieve between now and the 31st of December.”
Here are Annie’s 10 steps for life goal success:
Step 1: Raise your standards
“Write out your bottom lines, what you will NO longer tolerate in your life. Flex those courage muscles and find the courage to claim what you deserve. When you have a heightened self -awareness of what’s acceptable and what isn’t, you can look at changing your current belief system that is keeping you from where you want to go and enhance any beliefs that serve you. Then you will be able to help yourself produce the results you desire more quickly.”
Step 2: Ditch the negativity
“Commit to a detox mind diet and decide from today not to indulge in or dwell in any negative thoughts or emotions, or allow anyone to hook you into any negative talk or gossip for seven consecutive days. It’s extremely challenging, but rewarding and powerful. It’s amazingly effective to discover how fearful, stressed, destructive and non- productive we can be at times without even realising it.”
Step 3: Keep focus
“Stay 100% focused on what you DO want, not on what you DON’T want. Be very careful who you share these goals with, as 90% of people will try to talk you out of them or try to sway you off your path to suit their needs. For example, if you want to quit drinking, friends may manipulate you to go for a drink by shaming you into believing you are being a bore or if you want to lose weight colleagues may try to persuade you to ‘just have one.’ Never justify or defend, just smile and say ‘No thanks’ or ‘Perhaps another time but not tonight.’”
Step 4: Jump in with both feet
“The starting point is your desire in order to ensure congruency and staying motivated. Write a list; what I do like about my life, what I am immensely grateful for, what I want to happen/have, the gap between my current life and ideal life. Set aside 5-10 minutes to be by yourself and drop from head to heart to be sure you truly want to achieve your goal(s). Half measures avail us nothing if you dip your toes halfway in, you will get watery weak results.”
Step 5: Master mind-mapping
“Mind-map your goals: a) Centre circle: write your specific goal; b) outside circle: chunk down the goal into tasks you will need to accomplish to achieve it; c) spokes: draw spokes radiating out from each mini circle and write out each aspect you want to consider. Leave lots of space to play around and flesh it all out.”
Step 6: Don’t get overwhelmed
“Break down the action points. On a piece of paper, write down every single action you will have to take and chunk down the more detailed tasks to help you create your master to-do list. How much money do you need to put aside or to earn? What new skills will you need to learn? What new disciplines, habits or behaviours will you need to build into your life? Who can you ask to support you? What contacts, connections or resources could be helpful? Who do you need to let go of?”
Step 7: Make a plan
“Identify a critical path to define the most crucial steps that must happen for your goal to become a reality. Begin with the end in mind. Take a sheet of paper and make 3 headings across the top; 1. What I want. 2. Why I want it. 3. To be achieved by.”
Step 8: Take some photos of inspirational words and images of your goals
“Use them as your screensaver on your laptop, iPad or phone. Print out a small A4 sheet with them on and laminate the sheet and keep it to hand or place it by your bed or desk so you can constantly look at it.”
Step 9: Employ some positive mantras
“Your goals are a representation of your internal compass. These goals will drive you forward, so make sure you inspire yourself daily and don’t steer off track. Change all passwords and enter them manually creating a new password: ‘I can and I will,’ so you remain motivated.”
Step 10: Make it happen!
“Start with the toughest action that you fear most. This will make the rest of them so much easier to accomplish. The only way to overcome fear is to walk through it.”
Annie Ashdown is author of bestseller ‘The Confidence Factor,’ £12.99. Her clients include household names in the corporate and celebrity world. Renowned for her work on both television and radio, she has taken to the stage all over the UK and Europe addressing thousands on self-esteem and self -confidence.