Harvest time – questions to help you review your year.

September. We’re heading into autumn; crisp mornings, cosy jumpers, red and gold leaves on the trees. So much to enjoy.

And harvest time. The culmination of the year. What better time to review, renew and refine?

And plan for 2019!

Every tomorrow is an outcome of what I do today, and the beauty of it all is that today is happening all the time. Craig D. Lounsbrough

So –   you need your journal, a drink,  a comfortable chair,  so you can spend some invaluable time assessing the past 8 months. These questions are there to start you off – you’ll probably think of more.

Overall, has 2018 been fruitful [productive, constructive, rewarding, successful]?

Will you reach your goals by the year end?

Have you made the best use of your time? Have you maximised every opportunity?

What has worked out well?

What hasn’t? Think about why. What could you have done better? Is it too late?

What needs to be completed before the year end? How can you ensure that happens?

What needs to be nurtured for the future?

What needs to be swept away?

What changes do you need to make – personally & professionally?

Who are the people who nourish you? Who supports you and lifts you up? Who is a positive influence?

How have you contributed to the lives of others – family, friends, community?

Have you always shown kindness, integrity, forgiveness?

Who is your accountability partner?  Have you met with him/her regularly? What have you gained from these sessions?

Who/what is mentoring you?

Now is the time to start planning for 2019 and setting your goals. What visions and plans do you have? Are you ready to turn them into meaningful and realistic goals?

I hope you enjoy your autumn review.

Please share your comments & questions below and if you’ve enjoyed this post, please share it with your friends.

Nina is a qualified life coach who enjoys learning and sharing about flourishing.  She is a novice blogger.

7 Reasons why you should love your goals!

 “People with goals succeed because they know where they are going – it’s as simple as that.”  Earl Nightingale

earRight, I’m going to start with a big confession.

I love, love, love goals and goal setting! I can – and do! – talk about goals for hours to anyone who’s interested. [Yes, my family and friends are very long-suffering :)]

Why? Why am I so keen on something that most people don’t do?

And in fact I didn’t use to, until I discovered that proper planning makes a HUGE difference to my life and its outcomes.

Why goals rock – ie why you should love them

Goals are plans and strategies to move you and your life forward, not wishes or daydreams. In other words, goals give direction to your life. How do you know where you’re going, how to get there, or if you’ve got there without goals?  

Writing goals down in a journal and reviewing them regularly, sticking post-it notes in prominent places and/or discussing them with a supportive friend, activates your reticular activating system (RAS). This brings clarity and focus – helping you to quickly spot things that help you reach your goals.  Basically, the RAS is your best buddy in reaching your goals.

Knowing the why behind the goal [all the benefits] gives you purpose and fulfilment.

You simplify your life because you have a clear focus and can eliminate what isn’t going to propel you forward.

Goals make decision making easier.

Celebrating every small success releases dopamine which makes you feel good and encourages you to tackle the next task.

People who set goals and work on them are more successful, fulfilled and happier.

Honestly, what’s not to love about goals? If you have any comments, doubts about how lovable goals are or queries, pop them into the comments box or email ninafcoach@gmail.com

You may also find this post useful – Why and Other Questions You Must Answer Before You Set Your Goals – yes, it’s a mouthful but it’s a good read 🙂

“Setting goals is the single most important step you will take in improving your life.” Oli Hille

dream   Nina Franklyn Bsc[Hons], CCLC, RSA is a qualified life coach, with a special interest in goals, success and influence. She runs popular workshops as well as offering 1:1 life coaching, often via phone or email, for people who are serious about creating a better life or following their purpose.

Why & Other Vital Questions You Must Answer Before You Set Your Goals

“It’s the why behind the vision that inspires the action.”  NinaFCoach   click to tweet    

The most important question you can ask yourself before you  even write down your goals and start working  them, both professionally and personally is “Why?”
  • Why am I doing this?    [Keep asking this until you have a list of reasons.]
  • What are the benefits of doing this for myself and for those I love?
  • What will happen if I don’t set this goal and achieve it?

Spend time thinking about the answers, discuss them, do any necessary research. Be absolutely crystal clear on the why and the benefits. This will guide and motivate you in the weeks that lie ahead while you work on your goals. Write everything down – so that you can refer to it later. Also, writing stimulates clarity, memory and positivity.

The next questions are about the practicalities of achieving your goals

  • Can I do this at this time and with my set of circumstances? It’s good to have goals that challenge us but if the challenge is close to impossible, it’s better to find another starting place and take the necessary steps.
  • What do I need before I can begin? [knowledge, resources, money etc]
  • What are the opportunities for success and what are the threats?
  • Who can help me?
  • How will I know when I have succeeded? Be clear on this.
  • When will I have finished? Every goal needs an end date – you can adjust it if needs be.
  • Who are my mentors? [either in real life or books, blogs, CDs etc]
  • Who is my accountability partner? I fully recommend that you have one – to keep you on track, to celebrate you successes and to cheer you along. Pick someone you know will be both firm and supportive.

These questions will help you set up your goals for success. If you have any comments or queries, please ask them below or email ninafcoach@gmail.com

Thank you for reading! Every success!

 

 

Say Goodbye to Procrastination Forever!

“Someday is not a day of the week.”    Janet Dailey

“Someday is not a day of the week.” Janet Dailey

The truth is, we all procrastinate sometimes and it doesn’t matter much (playing Bubble Shooter is one of my distractors) but in some cases procrastination becomes a major problem with serious consequences.

But it is possible to say goodbye to procrastination forever and it’s not that difficult.

When procrastination damages lives

  • Thomas lost his business because he kept putting off sending invoices to clients.
  • Caroline could have got a first at university but only scraped a pass because she never handed her work in on time and didn’t revise for her finals.
  • Edward‘s friends and co-workers are fed-up because he’s always late, and he never keeps his commitments because he’s ‘always too busy.’

If you are going to beat procrastination, it’s helpful to understand something about it.

Two types of procrastination:

20% of adults are trait procrastinators who habitually postpone or stall, like Thomas and Caroline. In other words, they routinely procrastinate, putting off even essential tasks ‘until tomorrow’.

Edward falls into the Type B Procrastination classification – mentioning a long list of irrelevant tasks he ‘had to do’ rather than the tasks he was meant to be doing.

In fact, Edward is always scurrying from one place, one task to another. However, he fails to deliver, personally and professionally. “I’m so sorry,” he says, “I’ve been so busy lately…..” and he reels off a list of activities that ‘prevented’ him doing what had been expected of him. None of which impress or placate his friends or work mates.

The reasons for procrastination include:

fear of failure or fear of success

anxiety/low self-esteem – procrastination has a strong link to self-esteem. In fact, they feed off each other – if you have low self-esteem then you often procrastinate. This increases low self-esteem and it becomes a vicious circle.

perfectionism

inability to plan or start

inability to delay gratification e.g. it’s more fun to play computer games or chat to colleagues than start the report your boss asked for

The penalties of procrastination:

Disappointment – you don’t get a table at for an anniversary dinner because you didn’t book in time or you can’t wear your best suit for an important interview because you didn’t take it to the dry cleaners in time.

Self-sabotage – you don’t get the job because you didn’t apply in time. Researchers believe that trait procrastinators tend to have lower levels of wealth, health and happiness.

Increased stress – because things don’t get done which causes problems and also because putting things off causes people to feel guilty, irritable and defensive.

Lower self-esteem – which makes it more likely you will procrastinate in the future. It also encourages people to drink too much alcohol, overeat or smoke.

Increased stress in other people because we haven’t met our obligations to them professionally, personally or at church. This in turn causes us to feel stressed or guilty.

How to beat procrastination:

By changing your mind-set you can significantly change your habits and behaviours.

1) The vital first step is to make a conscious decision that you no longer want to procrastinate. You are going to be known as the ‘always does’ person and not the ‘never does’ person.

2) When the ‘I’ll do it later’ or ‘I can’t face it now’ thoughts start to take over, tell yourself “I ALWAYS perform tasks in a timely fashion. I am competent and capable. I can do it!” Say it over and over again until you genuinely start to believe it.

3) Find an ‘accountability buddy.’ Sharing your plans and goals with someone you trust who will keep you accountable is motivating and energising.

4) Writing things down is essential as it focuses attention. Write out a list of everything you have to do – either at work or at home. Then review it and assign each task a value:

Vital – for tasks that are urgent and important. If you have more than one Vital Task then the most pressing is 1, followed by 2 and so on. Write down why you need to get the task done and what will happen if you don’t

Important – for tasks that need to be done soon but are not urgent. Again, number them in order of importance.

Later – for tasks that can safely be left for a while.

Delegate – for tasks that you can hand over to someone else.

Start with the top 3 Vital Tasks – write them down and remind yourself of the benefits of getting them done. Work through all your Vital and Important tasks 3 or 4 at time.

5) Turn off all possible distractions e.g. close down facebook, emails etc. Remind yourself of the benefits of finishing the work in a timely manner.

6) Check you have everything you need before you start. Nothing is more discouraging than realising half way through a job that you haven’t got an item or a resource and that you are going to have to down tools and find it.

If you’re worried that you can’t do a task, ask for help or research how to do it before you start it.

7) Make sure that your work area – either at work or home – is well-organised and free from clutter. Clutter drains you emotionally. Keep tidying as you go.

8) Forget perfectionism! Instead focus on excellence – do the absolute best you can at that moment.

9) Learn as you go – so that next time you face the same task you know that you can do it successfully and to an excellent standard. This is highly motivating.

10) Reward yourself each time you accomplish a task! You deserve it and it will motivate you. Check your facebook, go for a walk, read the newspaper. It doesn’t have to be anything big – just something that will make you feel good. Plus you will be able to bask in the praise from others who have noticed the change in you 🙂

So, give these ideas a go and say goodbye to procrastination forever! Remember, that it takes 3 – 4 weeks to establish a new habit – so don’t give up if you slip back into old patterns – just start again. Let me know how you get on!

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