Monday, 18 January 2016

Plan Your Way to a Cracking 2016

Do you find yourself tempted with yet another round of New Year resolutions to help change your life, and achieve your goals? According to Gallup about 90% of us fail to keep our New Year’s resolutions.  It is not the goal that is wrong, this is the easy part, but where it can go wrong is to do with commitment; this is the hard part. 

It’s not about having to try harder; the key is, do you have the motivation?  To increase your chances of achieving resolutions are to connect them to a strong purpose that will keep you in action, no matter how tough things become.  You need a strong ‘why’ that is bigger than any ‘but’. For example, "I want to get fit, but I don’t have time.”  Overcoming the ‘but’ is the hardest part.

To reach your goal starts not with the goal itself but a committed decision, a burning desire, a willingness to take repeated action, for as long as it takes and for whatever it takes.
Keep Growing

Here is a practical process to goal planning:

1.       Get clear on what you want. What did you tolerate in 2015? What was challenging? What do you not want to have happen again? Make a decision on what you want your life to be one year from now.
2.       Get clear on why – what are the reasons you must absolutely achieve this no matter what?
3.       Get momentum: Break it down into smaller steps and tasks. Identify one small thing you can do immediately toward achieving your goal.
4.       Schedule your actions monthly, weekly and daily.
5.       Take action. Masses of action. Stay committed to your decisions, but also, be flexible in your approach.  
6.       Review, measure and evaluate. What actions have worked well, what hasn’t? What can you do differently?
7.       Review steps 3-6 every week.

Remember to celebrate success and repeat the cycle as you continue to make progress.

If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they have planned for you, not much.

It’s not what we do once in a while that shapes our lives or our careers, but what we do consistently.  There’s always a way – if you are clear on the purpose and you’re committed to take action.


Blue Monday blues? It might be time for a career change

Reportedly the most depressing day of the year, Blue Monday typically falls on the third Monday of January and is said to be the result of the festive come-down and the reality of returning to work. Did you find yourself groaning about another Monday in the office this morning? Chances are, Blue Monday is not to blame. Have you considered that maybe it’s time for a career change?

If it isn’t work that’s getting you down, Dr Cliff Arnall (the psychologist behind the original study that highlighted Blue Monday as the most depressing day of the year) has some top tips for increasing motivation and happiness at this time of the year.

·      Be your authentic self – stop pretending to be somebody that you’re not. Embrace your real personality and your true hopes and dreams, and live your authentic life. If this means giving up your day job and pursuing your childhood dreams, then so be it. Don’t squash yourself into a predetermined mould.
·      Get rid of toxic people – negative people bringing you down? Then it is time to remove them from your life. While we may feel we are harsh cutting out toxic people from our lives, it is better for our wellbeing in the long run. Positivity and encouragement are key from friends and family.
·      Simply decide and choose to be happy – a favourite quote from the famous bard, “Tis nothing good or bad but thinking makes it so” – Shakespeare. Take charge of your thoughts. Happiness is not something to be found or to be sought after. You just decide and take action.
·      Understand your goals Dr Cliff Arnall advises a little bit of self-reflection and forward thinking - sit down with a piece of paper and title it “I choose to…”. Follow it up with goals you want to achieve throughout the year, whether this will be to learn a new sport or travel to your dream destination. While these may seem similar to New Year’s Resolutions, heading the sheet with a self-declaration enables you to take responsibility for your actions, motivating you to really take them forward in the following year.

Speaking to the BBC in 2012, Arnall said he was keen to use the day as a “springboard into looking at what actually matters in our lives”, a sentiment that aligns perfectly with reassessing your work-life balance. Do you need a career change? Does work fulfil you as a person? Are you suppressing a life’s dream that you’ve always wanted to pursue? Instead of accepting Blue Monday as the most depressing day of the year, why not use it as an excuse to start pushing yourself to achieve what you’ve always wanted?

While many feel it’s too late to switch directions, with the proper coaching and industry expertise, it is entirely possible to achieve your dreams. As part of the Baker Coaching New Years resolution, we have created a new online career coaching package called ‘Project Star’. This is an engaging and thorough career coaching programme that operates on a three step basis, guiding you through who you really are as a person, what career change would fulfil you fully and how to go about getting there. If you are looking to Explore, Dream and Discover a new year in 2016 why not get in touch so you can be part of this new programme when it launches towards to the end of this month.

Don’t box yourself in and sell yourself short – harness the Blue Monday buzz and get in touch today about maximising your career change potential. Call 01638 751087, email