My favourite time of year is the beginning of the new year. I get that it has a poor reputation for being an arbitrary time of year to “transform your life,” and that New Years’ resolutions are notorious for failing by February. Maybe 2021 was a really good year for you, and you’re on a roll. Or perhaps you’ve had a particularly rough year and are feeling trapped and uninspired. It’s never too late to set (or adjust) your objectives and make a strategy, no matter where you are right now.
Success is never a by-product of chance; it is the outcome of deliberate preparation and concentrated work. You must plan for 2022 if you want it to be better than the previous year. For years, I’ve utilised a monthly system of self-reflection and planning, and it’s been crucial in helping me become a more thoughtful, focused, and happier person.
Look Back Before You Look Ahead
As we welcome the year 2022, I’ve put up a list of questions you should ask yourself to help you create realistic goals:
- What can you do better in 2022?
- What went horribly wrong in 2021, and how can you avoid it?
- What limiting behavioural patterns did I repeat this year?
- What contributed to your growth (even if it was just a little bit) in 2021?
- Who boosted my energy levels most? Who drained my energy levels most?
- What types of goals do you want to fulfil in 2022 (e.g. career, lifestyle, family, mental health)?
- Which habits had the most positive impact on my life?
- Which habits had the most negative impact on my life?
- What’s the biggest realisation you’ve had in 2021?
- What worked and didn’t work in 2021 and what needs to change to achieve success?
3 Steps to Setting and Achieving Your Goals in 2022
- Write down what you want to achieve
Do you plan on writing a book this year? Do you want to eat more healthily? Do you want to start meditating? Imagine having unlimited access to whatever you desire and only having to choose from a menu.
- Write down your next steps
After you’ve worked out what you want, write down what you’ll need to do next to get there. Start by asking yourself these questions:
- What are my restrictive behavioural patterns and what can I do to fix them?
- How can I do more of the things that have had a positive impact on my life?
- How can I do less of the things that have had a negative impact on my life?
If you’re starting a new book, for example, the following stage may be to come up with some book ideas or write a page. Keep it brief and straightforward so that your next step is something you can do on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.
Don’t overcomplicate things; getting started is the key to achieving ambitious goals.
- Take action — starting today
It’s time to get started now that you know what you want and have your next steps mapped out. What five goals would you set for yourself if you had just one year to accomplish them? After you’ve selected your five goals for the year, prioritise them so you know where to focus your energy.
Here’s a pro tip: when something is truly important to you, go after it now – today.
Examine your to-do list and choose one item that you can start today. You’ll be astonished at how much progress you can achieve this year if you follow this approach consistently. Additionally, consider using a spreadsheet or Notion template to monitor your goals.
It doesn’t have to be grand; just do something to get you closer to your goals and resolutions for 2022. Want to exercise more in 2022? Do a 10-minute workout today. Want to write more for W’SUP next year? Write a 500-word article today. Want to read more books? Read for 15 minutes today.
5 Daily Habits to Become a Learning Machine in 2022
Learning does not end when you acquire your formal degree; rather, it begins at that moment. “Wisdom is not a product of learning, but of a lifetime endeavour to acquire it,” Albert Einstein observed. I’ve discovered that the more I study, the sharper my thinking gets, the more opportunities I create, and the more meaningful my life becomes. This is why, in order to acquire as much wisdom as possible, I’ve set a few reading and study routines.
- Curate Your Online Media
Instead of serving as a source of inspiration and learning, most people’s social media feed serves as a source of entertainment and gossip. What if, instead of meaningless entertainment, you were met with inspiring accounts that taught you new things when you opened Twitter, Instagram, or YouTube? The average Australian spends about 1h 46m a day on social media. With so much time spent on social media each day, it’s a good idea to focus on self-improvement while curating your digital feed.
- Make Self-Education a Top Priority
I’m not here to criticise the tertiary education system; rather, I’m here to encourage self-education. Learning does not end when you graduate from TAFE or college or university; rather, it begins. You can acquire any skill at any time of day because of the internet’s abundance of knowledge. There’s a wealth of knowledge available at your fingertips, whether it’s through YouTube videos, blog articles, online courses, SkillShare classes, books, email newsletters, or podcasts. There are no excuses.
- 1 Hour of Entertainment → 1 Hour of Learning
I’m not suggesting that you eliminate all forms of entertainment from your life. You know you don’t have to live like a Spartan. That isn’t much fun in life. Do you, on the other hand, require 5+ hours of entertainment every day? What if you swapped an hour of Netflix or social media for an hour of reading, listening to a podcast, taking a course (on Skillshare or Coursera), or something else? This one modification in your daily routine will have a significant impact on your personal and professional growth. To put it another way, one hour of daily reading equates to 45–55 novels each year.
- Broaden Your Horizons and Stop Judging People
Everyone, in my opinion, can teach us something. Every individual, whether a janitor or a highly successful CEO, a criminal or a monk, has something to teach us. The majority of individuals, on the other hand, allow their egos, beliefs, and judgments to come in the way of keeping an open mind and learning from others. A spiritual person is labelled as a freak. A successful entrepreneur is labelled as a workaholic. They consider a wealthy investor to be a jerk. A closed mind is characterised by rapid judgement. Fixed beliefs are indicated by a closed mentality. They are an indication of someone who refuses to learn. What if you put aside your judgement and replaced it with curiosity? What if you began inquiring about other people’s opinions, habits, and day-to-day activities? This does not imply that you must agree with everyone, but it does imply that you must retain an open mind. Overall, let go of your ego, judgments, and beliefs so that you may broaden your horizons and learn from others.
- Read Books. Seriously.
Reading books is the biggest life hack there is. To no one’s surprise, the average millionaire reads more than 24 novels every year. Books have taught me more about entrepreneurship, marketing, and investing than my university degree ever did. Here’s what I recommend if you want to make reading a stronger daily habit: Make it a part of your morning or evening routine by scheduling it in your calendar app or productivity planner. Sign up for a free trial of an audiobook service to read on the move and most importantly, turn your ‘dead time’ into learning time (e.g., a daily 1-hour commute can be used to listen to audiobooks).
Also, if you haven’t read James Clear’s book Atomic Habits, I strongly advise you to do so. Here are a few inspirational phrases that have remained with me and will get you pumped for 2022:
- “Every action you take is a vote for the type of person you wish to become.”
- “You should be far more concerned with your current trajectory than with your current results.”
- “Habits are the compound interest of self-improvement.”
- “Success is the product of daily habits — not once-in-a-lifetime transformations.”
- “When you can’t win by being better, you can win by being different.”