Today is August 26th, which means summer holidays are almost over. It is time to think about the new school year and how to ensure 2016/17 is successful. Many of us have truly enjoyed our summer pace and are wondering how on earth we are going to get through the September chaos. Here are some tips on how to ensure that you have a September that is full of excitement and inspiration rather than dread and chaos.
Tip 1 - Identify what is important to you
How many times do you find yourself wondering where the day has gone? Questioning whether you had a productive day or whether it was wasted on things that aren't even important to you? I often wonder if I am spending my time and energy on the important things in life, or if I am caught up too often spending my time on things that don't really matter. It is difficult to reflect on how we spend our time and whether how our time spent is going to fulfill us. BUT it is important and necessary. What is important to you? Do you spend time on what is important to you? These are questions you must know the answer to. Alternatively, we end up spending way too much valuable time on things that are not important. Tasks that drain us and create stress, rather than excite us and fuel us with energy.
Tip 2 - Commit to making it happen
Once you know what is important to you, think about the areas in your life where you are hitting the target. The areas of your life where you can say, YES, this is important and I do spend my time and energy on it. Celebrate that, and then commit to keep doing what you are doing. Even though life gets busier when September hits, make the commitment to keep it going! Next, focus on the areas where you are missing the target. The areas that are important, but you find that you do not spend your time and energy on them.. This is where the focus needs to be, Make a commitment to change and improvement. Use September as an excuse to make a change. Create a schedule that incorporates what is important and get rid of the non-important stuff. Take charge and know that you have the choice to change how you are going to spend your time and energy. Choose wisely, commit and make the change.
Tip 3 - Set clear RELEVANT goals
So now that we know where we want to improve, next it is time to set some clear relevant goals. It isn't easy to set goals and see them to fruition. Too often, we start off keen to set goals, we write them down and proudly post them on our fridge, and then forget about them a week later. To set goals that you will stick with and that are attainable you must set SMART goals.
S - specific
R - relevant
I realize that SMART goals may be overdone for some of you, but using this system does work. The trick is to also be held accountable. Share your goals with someone who will make sure you stick to it, and who will be your biggest cheerleader when you need it most..
Before I leave goal setting, I want to focus on the R for relevant. Remember the points I made earlier about needing to figure out what is important to you? And identifying the areas where you are missing the target? The goals you set, MUST be relevant to you. Set goals that are important to you and that mean something to you, or guess what, there is no way you will stick to them. If you are trying to hit goals that someone else identified for you and they don't mean anything to you, unfortunately, you will most likely not achieve them.
Tip 4 - Take Charge
I have learned over the years that there are things I can influence and other things I cannot. Proactive people focus their time and energy on what they can influence, rather than spend their energy on what they have very little or no control over. Reactive people blame others. Proactive people own and take charge of what is happening in their lives. Rather than worrying about things you cannot control, spend you time on what you can control. Rather than blaming what is happening in your life on others, know that you have the control to make choices and that you can choose to change.. You can control how you spend your time, your response to people, your anger, your frustrations, your hate, your lack of patience etc.
September is coming. You can't control it, so choose not to whine about it, instead, embrace it and figure out how to experience it to the fullest. If the summer brought your family together and you cherished the bike rides and trips for ice cream, then when September hits don't let that kind of valuable time go. Make it a goal to find the time because It is within your control! No excuses.
Remember: Think about what is important to you, identify where you are missing the target, commit to improvement, set goals and take charge. I guarantee that regardless of the fact that September is almost here and winter is not to far either, this approach to September and to life will serve you well!