Ready to make 2018 your best, most real year yet?

- Tracey Hancock, REALiving coach + mentor

At this time of the year, there's a lot of talk, not to mention pressure, to set resolutions. That pressure can come from family, friends, social media and everywhere else you look! 

Let's take the pressure off!

Firstly, just because somewhere at sometime someone decided New Years was a good time to set some resolutions, doesn't mean you have to. If it works for you, great. If not, then don't do it.

And secondly, if you dive straight into setting resolutions, goals or whatever you want to call them, there are some important steps that have been missed (and you really need to know about these because this is why so few people actually achieve the resolutions that they set!).

Step 1: How do you want to feel this year?

Stressed, cranky, moody, tired, irritable, pushed and pulled, stretched, heavy, constantly sad and unhappy, stuck ... My guess is you don't want to feel any of those but more often than not, that's how people end up feeling, right?

It's possible to live well but it requires a deliberate, more conscious approach, and it starts with being clear about how you want to feel. Now don't misunderstand me, there'll be times when you'll feel stressed, tired, sad and those other so-called 'negative' or not so nice feelings but we want that to be less often or for shorter periods of time.

So how do you really want to feel?

Use positive, affirming words that describe how you want to feel. The words or phrases don't need to make sense to anyone other than you. Write down as many words that come to mind and then take a look at them - can you group some together and are there any themes? Go through the words until you have about 5. For the whole of 2018 (unless you change how you want to feel) use these words to guide what you think, say and do.

Step 2: What's your vision for the year?

Imagine it's the end of December 2018, you're at your favourite place, you might be with a good friend or perhaps you're by yourself. What are you saying about the year? What have you achieved, done and experienced? Think about who you've spent time with and where you were. What are you most proud of? What have you done more of, less of and started for the first time?

As you think about the year ahead, remember to keep in mind how you want to feel because that's going to influence what you want to do and have.

Describe the year ahead in as much detail as possible and commit it to paper. Yes, put it down on paper. Don't skip this bit. And I know it can seem scary to do that but trust me if you want to make this your best, most real year yet you need to write it on paper. 

Your North Star

When you combine how you want to feel with your vision for the year, you've created a North Star. That star is a guide that will help you make choices and decisions that lead you in the direction you want to travel. You can also use it to check that how you're living, working and playing is right for you.

Here's another way to think about it. Imagine a plane that takes off from Auckland to fly to Los Angeles. The pilot knows the destination and programmes that into the controls. For some of the flight the plane is travelling on auto-pilot but from time to time the pilot will need to make course corrections in response to weather conditions and other things that happen. It's the same in life. How you want to feel and your vision for the year, your North Star, that's your destination. Use it to guide your journey.

So I've not yet mentioned resolutions or goals, and that's because I want you to be clear about how you want to feel and your vision for the year ahead first. When you've got that clarity you'll be able to choose goals that are right for you. But the truth is...

You don't have to set resolutions or goals. If you live in alignment with how you want to feel and your vision for the year ahead, you will live well.

The choice is yours about setting resolutions or goals, but please if you want to live well, be clear about how you want to feel and your vision for the year ahead.

Want to make 2018 your best, most real year yet but not sure where to start. Contact me to discuss how the REALiving coaching approach could help you.


Tracey Hancock is a coach and mentor passionately committed to helping people live well. Drawing on her own experience and the lessons she's learnt trying to be and do what she thought was expected of her, Tracey will guide you to reconnect with your dreams so you can live your real life.

 If you know it's time for changecontact Tracey to learn more about the REALiving approach today.