If there is no struggle, there is no progress - Frederick Douglass
It’s corny title I know, but nothing else better reflects what I’m going to do. This is an introduction and invitation to my Journey. It will not be about big leaps of change. It will only be about small changes, tiny adjustments and habits forged day by day. I know this not what most people are looking for. You won’t find any magic formula, overnight success or recipe for greatness here. It may seem that it will be about arduous, repetitive and boring baby steps. But that’s how any sustainable and long-term change is produced. Yes, change is not given, found or won, it’s produced, it’s forged, it’s wrenched from our fears.
New Year’s resolutions?
Dreams. Expectations. High hopes. In January, most of us have plans or resolutions for the upcoming year. If we won’t schedule them specifically they will just stay our wishes. I’m not a big fun of New Year’s resolutions but you need to start someday and it doesn’t matter when.
But to make lasting changes we need to develop strong enough habits. Our days are full of those daily habits, routines, rituals and they are very important part of our life. They are making who we are, how we feel and where we are going to be in the future. Some of those routines serve us very well. Others not at all. If you want to change any of them, you need to replace them with new habits. That is the crucial part. If you leave that space empty, either bad habit will come back in a light speed or you will find yourself doing things you didn’t want to do.
You have to be aware of your rituals and habits and what’s most important you need to have full control over them. Way too many times I knew what I wanted to accomplish, I even knew how I need to do it but I didn’t plan it. I didn’t organize it properly. I didn’t block time for it. This is a mistake I’m not going to repeat any more. I’m done with that. It actually took me couple of days to set it up and plan my goals, my change, my vision, my Journey.
My plan doesn’t look very fancy. It’s not very sophisticated. But it’s going to work. It’s a simple excel sheet with 13 columns. My goals are divided into three categories. Milestones, rocks and minor rocks (I couldn’t come up with a better name). I’m not going to get into specifics but this is a plan for a whole year, with specific goals to get my vison which is on the next excel sheet. I didn’t want to spend hours preparing all this it and then just store it on my disc. That’s why it requires that I open it at least twice a day. There is a column with specific daily goals and a different one showing my progress. It needs to be updated every day. I made it to be a game and competition with myself. I made it to be fun and it is.
This is not a shock therapy and I wanted to avoid any big changes. New habits and behaviors I have added to my life are not taking me more than 30 min each. Each day is planed with repetitive daily habits spread though out the whole day. First item in my list is getting back to running before work and I’m reviving my morning routines. Saying three things I’m grateful for. Smiling for three minutes. Reading for 15 minutes before going to bed. Another thing is a general theme for each of week. For example, in the first week I’m going to work and pay attention to my body posture and body language.
Those little habits are very important to me but what’s even more meaningful are the bigger projects that I was putting off way too long. Those are the rocks that are going to build the milestones of my life. Each ‘rock’ is a part of a snowball that’s only going to get bigger and bigger. Now all of those rocks are planned and scheduled in my calendar. On some of them I’m going to work as fast as this week, others are planned for February, March or later. But they are all in there. Each day is organized, planed and there is no space for working on what I feel like in the moment.
Not a one-night stand
This time it’s not going to be a challenge. It’s something far more important than a challenge. Challenge prompts assumptions that it is a onetime thing, one-night stand. It suggests that we’re going to do it, accomplish our outcome, that we’re going to get to the third base and forget about. I want to from a relationship with my outcomes. I’m going to make us inseparable partners.
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