This is a time of year we often look back at the year that’s been; and forward to the year that might be.
And of course, we don’t need to wait for this point in the calendar year. Any given moment can be marked as the start of our Year Ahead. But this is when many of us naturally get reflective.
Reflection is good. But envisioning is better. Learning from the past is useful. But learning from the future is inspiring and change-creating in The Right Now.
To kick-start your learning from the future, here is “The Power of 3”, as applied to your year ahead.
3 Major Initiatives
For the coming year, what will you choose are your 3 Major Initiatives? 3 big pieces of work that will move forward?
Although it’s not what’s often advised in the personal dev literature, I love to have 3 big things to work on. And for sure, I’ll set one of those initiatives as The One Thing. But having meaningful side-projects can be really useful – for 2 reasons:
- We can’t split ourselves down the middle. So I want to be working on 2 or 3 areas at once to reflect and positively impact my WHOLE being; and I also want to use this as an opportunity to check ecology between my goals.
- Our brains love novelty and variety. And when things slow on a project, it’s great to have another meaningful pursuit to turn our attentions to, albeit temporarily. And when we come back to Project 1: we tend to do so with renewed vigour, interest, creativity and clarity.
List your 3 Major Initiatives now.
3 Major Moves
If there were only 3 Major Moves to complete 90% (or more) on each of your 3 Major Projects, what would those Major Moves be?
Think of your Major Moves as sub-projects whose accumulative effect is the achievement of your Major Project. Break those Major Moves down into deliverables, strategies and actions. And into timelines and deadlines.
Plot those dates and activities, high-level, in your calendar now.
3 Daily Practices
If we’re to achieve our 3 Major Initiatives and work diligently on our 3 Major Moves, there are some key ingredients needed to perform at our best, consistently and over the long term. What’s your list of key ingredients?
My list would include: Commitment. Energy. Focus. Clarity. Meaning. (And probably more, given more time to reflect.)
To make those key ingredients part of your basic make-up, what 3 Daily Practices would ensure those ingredients were always in place? Like keystone habits, think of those simple 80/20 practices that snowball into inevitable follow-ons.
Commit now to 3 Daily Practices.
3 Dominant Habits
Not all habits are created equal. Choose 3 Dominant Habits that will make most material difference to your year ahead. And make a commitment to ingraining that habit as a part of your new way of being.
If you could choose any habits to adopt and develop (and you can!), what would they be? Decision. Action. Creativity. Service. Development.
Choose 3 Dominant Habits to foster in the coming year.
3 Life Rules
Who do you need to be, to make all of this happen in the year to come?
To help you be the person you need to be, set yourself some rules. And if you chose to commit to 3 Simple Rules to live your year by – where each rule is summarised as just one word – what would those rules/words be?
For example: Mastery. Excellence. Enjoyment. Elegance. Tranquillity. Peace. Rhythm. Harmony. But those are just (some of) my words. What would your words be? And how do you plan to live those words, every single day?
Set yourself 3 one-word Life Rules now.
Making the commitment to your year ahead
Everything above are just words on a screen. But imagine, for a moment, you were to take some time out in the very near future to reflect deeply on the ideas above. And imagine you were to make unbreakable commitments to yourself in all of these areas. And imagine building a project around those commitments to bring them to life.
How good does that year ahead look to you, now?