This is the first of two special guest blog posts from Ariane Trélaün of Do Your Thing.
This time of year, there’s all kinds of chatter, lots of negative chatter, about resolutions. Yes, lots of people make resolutions, but an even louder lots of people bash resolutions. Make fun of those of us who dive deep into this process and map out what we want, vision board it, chart it, graph it. Tell us that we’ll just fail, we’ll be so good until we give up, somewhere around the end of January. Whatever. Let them chatter. Because here’s what I know is true.
Naysayers gonna neigh. Make your plan anyway.
Why do you need a plan for your year?
Most important: To have agency in your own life.
In social science, agency is the capacity of individuals to act independently and to make their own free choices. One's agency is one's independent capability or ability to act on one's will. This ability is affected by the cognitive belief structure which one has formed through one's experiences, and the perceptions held by the society and the individual, of the structures and circumstances of the environment one is in and the position they are born into. Disagreement on the extent of one's agency often causes conflict between parties, e.g. parents and children.
It’s that simple, really. It doesn’t matter who you are or your circumstances: You’re the boss of this thing you’re living, so you need to act like it. OK, sometimes things just happen, on their own. But most of the time if you want something, you’re going to have to get off your a** and make it happen.
Also: Time, as in "Not Unlimited."
It’s possible this is clearer to me than ever because I keep getting older, which puts the end so much closer (even though I tell myself it’s at least 50 years away). Still, our time here, no matter when we die, is not unlimited, and it’s a shame not to put it to the best use we can. Don’t put off living the life you want.
Finally, Purpose, as in “You Have One, You Know You Do."
I don’t know what your particular Thing is. I don’t need to know. I just know that you have something, we all have something, that’s ours uniquely to contribute while we’re here. It’s up to you to figure out what that is, and then DO IT. Which really can only happen if you have a plan.
If you don’t set your own direction, chances are you’re just following directions. Someone else’s. And you have too much big work to do, you’re too important for that.
So, I say: ignore all the naysayers and make a plan. Please don’t think that because it’s January already, that it’s too late. Also nonsense. You can start anywhere anytime. You just need to start.
Everyone’s plan is different. There are a million different ways to go about this. There are books you can buy, planners, courses, webinars. Or you can just do what I do: sit quietly and think.
Think about how you felt at the end of 2015. What was good about that year, what was not so good. What do you want more of, what do you want less of? What felt best?
Think about what you want for yourself, for your business, for your life? What does that really look like? What do you want your life to be like on December 31, 2016?
Write it down. Chart it, if so inclined. Draw it. However you do it, you should know that a plan is a bit of magic, actually. It’s like a spell you’re casting, a way of pronouncing the thing(s) that you really want that begins to give them form. It’s a promise you make to yourself, to set your own direction, to be the boss of you.