Staying Committed to Your New Year’s Goals Long After the Energy You Set Them With Has Passed

cristian-escobar-297114

For many, a new year feels like a fresh start & a clean slate. And although you can make a change on any of the 365 days of the year, it’s still important to take advantage of any new energy and enthusiasm you may be feeling right now. What’s most important, though, is to accept & acknowledge that you likely won’t feel that same energy or enthusiasm every day, week or month this year and that you have a plan in place to bounce back from that.

Here are just a few ways you can make the most of your positive mindset right now and use it to build momentum & keep yourself inspired all year long:

  1. Set intentions – Intentions leave a little wiggle room for you to not be perfect, which is important. They require acceptance of where you already are while also requiring you to get crystal clear about the type of life you want to live, the type of person you want to be and how you can manifest that in your daily routine. Intentions are different from resolutions in the sense that they don’t set out to ‘resolve’ anything and instead help us gain clarity about what specific qualities or behaviors we want to possess that will help us live the life we want to. Instead of making resolutions & giving up at the first misstep, set intentions that are aligned with your goals and values and forgive yourself when your behavior isn’t aligned, knowing the intention is still true.
  2. Anticipate challenges – Every year will have some bumps in the road, both big and small, both expected and unexpected. Make a game plan for how you’ll respond to those. For example, if you know you have a trip coming up, are there ways you can start saving for it now? If you have an event later in the year, are there ways you can spread out the planning so it’s less overwhelming down the road? If you know your company is laying people off in the summer, can you start updating your resume or networking to prepare for that? Of course there are some things you can’t prepare or plan for, but doing an overview of big, upcoming events can help us feel less stressed when they approach. You should also put a plan in place for what you’ll do about unexpected challenges or any periods of depression, anxiety, disappointment, or failure this year. Who are your supports and what action steps will you take if those things should come up for you?
  3. Make 90-day goals – While it’s great to set long-term, yearly goals, it also leaves the space for us to put things off until much later in the year, possibly never getting around to something on our list or not leaving a realistic amount of time to accomplish it. If you want to ensure you make progress toward your goals early on, setting quarterly goals might be a better approach.
  4. Schedule weekly and monthly reflection – Checking in with yourself to reflect on how your year is going, whether or not you’re behavior is aligning with your intentions and how your progress toward your goals is going is an important step that people often overlook. It’s great to have intentions and to set goals, but you need to be checking in with yourself on them, too, so you can make shifts and adjustments where needed. I recommend a Sunday and end-of-month check in to review what went well and what struggles you had the week or month prior, decide what changes need to be made for the week or month ahead, and create a plan to put those changes into action.
  5. Find accountability and support – You shouldn’t have to feel alone in your approach to the new year and having consistent accountability & support toward your intentions and goals will help you stay focused long after the new energy from the beginning of the year has passed. Find a reliable accountability partner or support group that has similar goals to yours and schedule time to check in with them weekly or monthly, no matter what. Sometimes just sharing our goals and knowing someone is going to be checking in with us about them at a specific time is enough to help us overcome the lack of energy or motivation we may experience otherwise.

How are you feeling about the new year? Have you set some intentions or goals for yourself? If you’re lacking clarity about what you want to achieve or manifest in the new year, that’s okay. Try journaling or talking with a friend or therapist to get in touch with your inner values. As you speak it out loud or write it on paper, your inner dialogue and internalized desires become apparent.

Wishing you all a healthy & fulfilling 2018!

 

 

Speaking Your Partner’s Love Language to Strengthen Your Connection

everton-vila-140207.jpg

Let’s face it, relationships are tough. Whether they be romantic, friendly, familial or professional, there is almost always bound to be miscommunication, misunderstanding, difference of opinions, difference of values, and varying mental and emotional reactions. Because it’s very rare that two people are 100% on the same page of understanding, feeling, emotion and thought at the same exact time, communication becomes a very complex, yet important component of maintaining any relationship.

When we think about communication however, we often think solely of verbal communication. We try to find ways we can better articulate ourselves, use I-language, speak in a calmer manner, be more complimentary, say thank you and I love you more often, share our feelings, etc. While these things are certainly important and helpful to any relationship’s stability, we might become confused when our efforts to be better verbal communicators or verbal expressers don’t entirely fix our problems. This is because verbal communication is only ONE way that we can express ourselves to our loved one – and only a certain group of people feel truly loved through words.

If you haven’t read ‘The 5 Love Languages’ yet, I highly recommend getting your hands on it (clickable link posted below). If you have, I’d love to hear your thoughts and whether or not it’s application has been useful in your relationships.

The book breaks down the 5 ways that humans typically give and receive love and speaks to the importance of knowing your partner’s love language and speaking to them in it consistently in order to add more growth, connection, fulfillment and security to your relationship.

The 5 love languages are:

  1. Words of Affirmation
  2. Quality Time
  3. Physical Touch
  4. Acts of Service
  5. Gift Giving

While most people find that all or most of the love languages are important in their relationship, there are some languages that make us feel more loved than others and when they are missing or lacking in our relationship we consequently feel a disconnect. The missing or lacking pieces usually aren’t due to lack of care, however. We just usually only speak in the love language that makes us feel most loved, which isn’t necessarily what makes our partner feel most loved, thus sometimes leaving us or our other with an emotional void. Therefore, it’s important that we understand both what we need and what our partner needs so we can adapt to one another accordingly.

You can read more about each love language, how to determine what you and your partner’s most prominent love languages are and how to speak to one another in them more frequently in the book below. There’s also a quiz at the end that will guide you in determining your love languages if you can’t quite figure it out throughout the course of the book.

I hope this resource leads to better understanding and better, more effective communication that allows both you and your partner to feel more loved and fulfilled in your relationship.

Feel free to contact me if you’d like to further discuss this book or these concepts or work through a problem in your relationship. I’m always glad to hear from you & happy to help!

Click to purchase