You know when you fill in a 'personality' quiz or a form and there's that question 'three words your friends and family would describe you as'? 'Ambitious' is almost always one of those words. Some may call my childhood ambitions naive and I may have been dismissed as a bit of a 'wishful thinker' but I've always wanted to be someone great. My first ever dream job at the age of four was to be a Princess! Not long after that (
and to this day still) I desperately wanted to be (the next) Britney Spears. These examples may seem a bit humorous but here's my point: there's nothing wrong with aiming for the best and setting your standards high for what you wish to achieve. This post isn't necessarily for me to reel off my goals for this year, or for the next five to ten years but I want to share with you how to go about setting your goals and achieving your best for 2016. We've all got to start somewhere, so why not start now?
Grab yourself a planner
Not only will purchasing a new notebook/diary/organiser/planner actually get you a little more organised, it's also a brilliant way to set out your goals and keep up to date with them. Come the end of the year, you can look back and recognise how far you've come and have hard evidence of your fantastic achievements. I'll never turn down fancy new stationary, and fortunately we now have access to some gorgeous stationary bits and pieces that wouldn't go amiss on Pinterest. My favourites are Kate La Vie's picks on Nouvelle Daily and also Kikki.K
Set yourself SMART goals
SMART goals is one of those concepts that seems to follow you around like a shadow, as it's something you were most likely introduced to at school and are having to use at University or work life. But, it's actually a pretty decent idea that is worth applying to your everyday life. If the concept is new to you, SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-bound. Instead of having the goal "I'm going to take up Pilates", it's worth breaking down your goal to ensure it's something you can actually do. Instead, make it "Every Monday and Thursday, I am going to do a Pilates class to improve my posture, fitness and mindset. I will do this every week for the next month before I review the situation". There you have a clear goal that sounds pretty damn smart to me! Set your goals out like this, stick to them and see how you get on (and I bet you'll get on pretty fine...).
Take baby steps
There's no point rushing towards your end goal, because as the old saying goes, Rome wasn't built in a day...! If you set yourself SMART goals, why not set yourself these goals each month, review them at the end, and set yourself a new one that inches you even closer to your ultimate end goal. If your aim is to get a new job this year, why not start of by taking it slowly by just talking to someone, either a careers advisor or speaking to a recruitment advisor, or even just your Mum or a good friend. Step one, done. Just take things chunk by chunk, and remember to keep things clear to yourself as to how these little steps will help you achieve the bigger picture.
It's easy to fall into the safety zone by just continuing to do the same thing you've been doing for so long. Instead, why not step out of your comfort zone and do something that may actual send a bit of adrenaline through you for once! For me, one of my aims this year is to properly get back into fitness by the end of 2016. I mentioned a few months ago I was experiencing a bit of fitness anxiety, and just couldn't let myself take the first step. Now, January is probably the worst time to step into a new gym for the first time as it's going to be packed with new starters. Instead, I'm challenging myself this month to actually go for a run. Outside. In front of loads of people. But I need to start somewhere. If I can do that, even if it's just once a week, I reckon I can step foot in a gym come February, right?! Continue to challenge yourself and you'll see changes quicker than you could ever imagine.
Celebrate your successes
It's almost imperative that you celebrate what you achieve throughout the year. If you get that brilliant appraisal at work that you've been working towards, recognise it and celebrate! If you've managed 6 weeks of a 'refined sugar free' diet, go and treat yourself to that new eyeshadow palette or pair of shoes you've been eyeing up (don't ruin it by scoffing a huge bar of Dairy Milk, cheeky). If you don't recognise or celebrate your achievements, you won't enjoy your journey to achieving your best. In particular, us Brits are usually useless at recognising and showing off things we've done well at but just remind yourself who you're doing all of this for (Y O U) and ignore what everyone else might be thinking, and celebrate these great moments for you!
What are you hoping to achieve in 2016? Have you set up any goals yet and what are you doing to achieve them? Happy New Year, too!