The new year is a great time to set your personal development goals for the year. To add some momentum to your efforts, incorporate these four ideas into your plans for 2018:
- Take Time to Reflect
Set aside the time you need for self reflection and to get feedback from others: what are the things you want to work on most in 2018? While most of us have a tendency to focus on faults we want to correct, we’re better served to explore new ways to leverage our strengths. What have you learned about yourself last year? What were your top achievements? Where were you able to make the most progress? Actually take the time to write down a few strengths you know will serve you well in 2018. Next, take stock of the downers. What are the things that drained you and left you feeling depleted in 2017? Finally, solicit feedback from family, friends, and coworkers. What do they think you are really good at? What is one thing they think you could do to raise your game? When we take the time to self-assess and ask for feedback from others, we develop a clearer image of who we are and what we want.
2. Visualize the Possibilities
Sometimes the responsibilities that we’ve worked ourselves into (current job, family, community obligations) become the fences that define the space in which we live. After reflecting on what gives us strength and what depletes us, it’s time to visualize your next phase of growth and start moving fences to make room. For example, maybe you’ve fallen into a rut in your current role at work and would welcome a new challenge and more pay, but you feel you could not possibly take on anything more for lack of sheer time and energy. To create the new space, imagine the tasks you can delegate. Make note of the unimportant activities that steal your time and eliminate them. Assess your community obligations and decide where you need to make adjustments. Talk through your ideas with people you trust and ask them to help you consider all possibilities. When you are able to visualize where you want to grow, uncovering ways to move the fences gets easier.
Write down between one to four reasonable goals for the next 90 days. For each one, write down the following: What actions will you take? In what time-frame? How will you measure progress? Who will hold you accountable?What resources do you need?
Making your personal plan doesn’t need to be complicated! Maybe you want to polish your presentation skills, so in the next two weeks you will find a friend who shares your goal. As a learning tool you watch a video on delivering a successful TED talk and discuss it. Over the next six weeks you agree to create, deliver and critique three presentations. At the end of your 90 days, decide if you want to add a new action or goal, such as join Toastmasters or work with a professional coach.
4. Enlarge Your Circle
When working on personal goals, it’s easy to neglect how we can use our strengths to help others. Share your growth experience…you might inspire someone close to you. Put the “new you” to work for a community cause you believe in. Let your personal network know what you’ve been up to, and see if there are new connections to be made based on your growth. Connecting with others about how we’ve grown reinforces our strengths and helps others at the same time.
Learn more about how to create more personal momentum in 2018 at the Momentum Leadership Conference in February. Don’t wait to register, space is going fast!