I don’t know about you, but I’ve never been able to make a New Year’s resolution stick. I like the idea of making positive changes, but it just hasn’t worked for me in the past. After a while, I got to the point where I didn’t bother making them anymore because it just meant inevitable failure. And who likes that?
Though we start with good intentions, studies have shown that most people fail at their New Year’s resolution before they actually get out of January! It’s clear that people just aren’t able to keep engaged with the practice.
About 5 years ago, I read a book entitled One Word That Will Change Your Life by a couple of friends of mine: Dan Britten, Jimmy Page and Jon Gordon and it’s a great New Year’s Resolution alternative.
I started using their method with great success (and no guilt from failed resolutions) and am happy to share it with you.
Put simply, the idea is to pick one word, and allow it to permeate your entire year. It’s a simple and extremely effective strategy, and there’s virtually no way you can fail!
Watch my Tuesday Training about this New Year’s resolution alternative in the video below or scroll down to read more.
Pick Your Word
For this New Year’s Resolution alternative, choose a word that is meaningful to you, one that has the power to change or uplevel the way you do things.
My word for 2020 was “refine” and it turns out it was quite an apt metaphor for the year. Refine means to makes something better little by little, but refine also means to remove impurities, a process that requires heat in an industrial process.
Take gold for example. To refine gold you have to heat it to separate out the impurities. It’s painful, but it has a purpose. When the heat was on and things were tough during 2020 I had to decide, will I allow these setbacks to crush me, or allow them to make me into something more refined?
This has really helped my mindset in navigating a challenging year. I can look back and see that the stress of 2020 has produced something better. Because of this, I’m looking to build on the successes I’ve had with the word “refined” and have chosen the word “better” for my 2021 new year’s resolution alternative.
Other words I’ve adopted in the past include COURAGE, FOCUS, and INTENTION. These words have meant so much more to me than any resolution has. They punctuate everything I did in during those relative years!
Apply Your Word
Choose key areas of your life you’d like to impact with your word. For example, I use the following seven areas of my life in which to focus my intentions, and they all happen to start with F to help remind me!
1. Family – this includes my nuclear family and my extended family.
2. Faith – I’m a Christian who is very active in my faith community and I’d like to do even better in that. Field – This encompasses my work, clients, quality of work, and integrity in my career.
3. Finances – Money makes the world go round, and I have the opinion that the money we have is a resource to steward. Sometimes I do that, and sometimes I could do better, so I’d like to be a better manager and steward of financial resources.
4. Fitness – This is the one I need the most help with, but it’s one I’m most excited about.
5. Friends – I would like to be a better friend and cultivate even better relationships with the people I walk through life with.
6. Fun – I’m really excited about this one and look forward to finding more ways in my life to relax, unplug and have fun. I’m really excited about being intentional about being better about
Keep Your Word Top Of Mind
Your word is one you’ll want to walk with you for the next 365 days. Keep your word in front of you so you’ll me constantly reminded.
One thing I like to do is to keep it on my lock screen on my phone. Below the simple graphic I made with the word, it lists the 7 priority areas of my life. Since I pick up my phone all the time it’s a great way to keep the word top of mind each day.
Do you have a word, yet? I’d love for you to share yours with me over on my Freelance on Fire Facebook page.
I’m excited for the coming year and the positive changes we’re sure to see in 2021!
Speaking of 2021, I’m going to be launching my podcast very soon, with tons of tips on how to launch and grow your freelance business. Sign up to receive notifications HERE.