Several years ago– November 11, 2014, to be exact– I had an epiphany. My good friend Joy told me how she felt stuck and unable to gain traction towards some long-held goals. In helping her analyze what steps to take for a breakthrough, I realized I could use them too.
That day we created what we called ‘commitment sheets’. These were personal contracts with ourselves for the things we resolved to do differently. We included mindset shifts, attitudes that belonged in the trash can, habits we would follow and inspired actions we would take. Each one was specifically designed to help us overcome our biggest internal stumbling blocks and gain momentum towards the fulfillment we desired.
Since then my contract has been a valuable resource that has helped me reach new levels of success. Here is the pact I made with myself that day, distilled into 8 simple steps that can help you achieve liftoff towards your own goals this year:
- Recognize the power of my thoughts to co-create my life and invest effort in directing them intentionally. Situations happen to us in life, and how we think about them generates feelings. Emotions influence the actions we take, so it is important to channel our thoughts in a way that is supportive.
- Forgive myself for past mistakes and look for present moment opportunities to do things differently. Until time machines are become a reality, the only opportunity for a re-do is in the present. Even if you can’t make direct amends, you can always be a changed person.
- Let go of excuses, face my fears, and take action to step outside my comfort zone. Two truisms: It is not possible to hold onto excuses and make progress at the same time. (Reinvention Law 3 in my book) Facing fears and being comfortable outside your comfort zone does get easier—with practice.
- Identify my top priority goals at work and in life, and free myself from obligations that aren’t in alignment with them. This step forces you to practice essentialism, which conserves energy for what’s most important to you.
- Stick to habits that give my body what it needs to that it can function at its most vibrant energy level. The best analogy for this is a car: our body is the vehicle for our mind and spirit, and without regular care and maintenance it cannot take us where we want to go.
- Move activities that are inspiring and fun to the top of my to-do list. With apologies to noted play expert Dr. Stuart Brown for a slight tweaking of his quote, making time to play is the purest expression of self-love. (To be honest this is a tough one for me—but hey, stretch goals are a good thing!)
- Take regular renewal days to rest, rejuvenate and revitalize my spirit. This step takes a page from the playbook of elite athletes, who understand how critical recovery time is to peak performance.
- Expand my vision, believe in myself, and shape my future from a space of possibility. This mindset shift opens us up to expanded opportunities which is where the magic happens.
Research shows that writing down goals increases the likelihood of accomplishing them, so I’ve created a special LiftOff Pact for you that contains these 8 simple steps. Click HERE to download it; choose one step to focus on this year and sign it. Honoring this commitment to yourself is the jet fuel that launches you to your dreams!
My Liftoff focus this year is Step 6—making play a priority on my to-do list. Share your pact with me in the comments below and let me know which step you’re going to choose as your ‘Liftoff focus’ this year!