It is hard to believe but New Year is slowly creeping in. It always seems to catch us totally by surprise, too early and quickly. We have not finished accomplishing this year’s resolutions yet and here comes the day when we are supposed to write the new ones! This time of the year I usually panic trying to finalize 25 projects at once that somehow fall into a danger of over-running into the next year.
But the truth is – there is no better time to take a break and think over what we can do better next year and how to avoid last minute rush. I believe everyone has their own customs around New Year, probably looking back at the past year (hopefully not with regret) and being excited about the unknown future or deciding a mission for the whole year ahead.
A few years ago my husband and I adopted a good habit that made a real difference in the way we live and see every year coming since then. We do it every New Year’s Eve or the next day depending where we spend it. It is pretty obvious routine and I hope most people already do it this way, but for those who don’t yet – I decided it is the right time to share our little tradition.
It is called planning & analysis, very much a life applicable project management theory. You are a project manager of your own life, after all :).
Stay focused. To better understand where we want to be in the end of next year, it is best to put it on paper. In writing it makes us think about details and express our desires more precisely. We keep a simple notebook for this and review it from time to time to stay on track.
Know what is important. Think about your values in life and allocate space for all main areas that matter to you: relationships / family, finance / wealth, business / career, self-development, health & wellbeing, household.
Be specific. Write down all your aims in every area and don’t be afraid to be somewhat a dreamer. You don’t need to come up with the plan of achieving all those targets straightaway, but to have them accurately listed is already a big step forward.
I agree, it might sound a bit boring at first place, too much planning and no space for contingency. While it is not exactly so. By planning you avoid unpredictable disasters and leave plenty of room to explore life and enjoy happiness.
I am sure you have a lot to say in each of the areas above, as most of us want to have more money in the bank account or better career, or lose weight or run a marathon. But I notice, a few people take time to analyse the relationships and self-development areas (I am not talking about professional knowledge). We live with an assumption that those things are just happening naturally and are not worth looking at, which is unfortunate. I guess if I asked you – would you want to improve relationships with your partner or friends or kids, most answers would be yes. But often we don’t realize what it takes and how unprepared we might be for such challenges.
Luckily my husband and I don’t have any major challenges in our relationship, but we any way don’t neglect a chance to share our insecurities, fears, or happy observations with each other. We tell one another what we appreciate in other half’s behaviours and character, what we would like to have more of and what don’t like and prefer it to be less of. We share what we are grateful for and happy about and what we want to improve.
For example, my husband never liked dancing. And I am not saying, you have to force your partners to do anything they don’t like. But if you share a life together, then who, if not your partner, would be aside you in anything you want to do with your life. After some time we learn to appreciate each other’s interests and take at least minimal part in them if required. I’ve been waiting for 5 year for my husband to finally say – all right, this year we are signing up to a salsa dancing club! Ha, you see, patience pays off in the end :)
I, in return, agree to review sex shop offers more often and firstly consider any new ideas before completely rejecting them!
This all comes under self-development area. Someone might need to improve their dancing skills, someone – their listening ability (mostly men, sorry :) ), someone needs to learn the names of all British football teams (at least!) or do less shopping and it goes on an on.
You don’t need to wait the whole year to do this exercise, of course. The more you share the better you understand each other, which is, as we all know, the essential basis of any relationships.
Good luck and Happy New Year to you!