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How To Create Better New Year's Resolutions

The only way to smash 2022

This year has been different. It’s a year where I worked towards goals and achieved a lot. It’s not been a year which I’ve found to have had as much ‘growth’ as the year before but nevertheless, as an individual, I’ve developed one of my biggest weaknesses. Organisation has always been something I struggled with so I made it ‘my word’. What is the concept of choosing your word? I hear you ask… well this blog will share all.

In the last week of 2017, my gym had bought some new plyometric boxes to add onto the ones that I had already managed to jump on top of during that year. When thinking about my goal for 2018 I decided that I wanted it to be something that would make me ‘jump’ out of my comfort zone (excuse the pun). I wanted to jump EVERY box that the gym had to offer. I sized it up and it reached my nose. Believe it or not… I did it.

The problem was that I smashed my goal within three weeks. I was obviously happy but after sharing the achievement on social media for the likes, I realised that I had nothing else to work towards. That point was a huge turning point for me mentally. I realised that numerical targets are good but also somewhat pointless because our brains are hardwired to want more and never be contempt (Read, The Chimp Paradox) I needed something more. Another honest problem with numerical based or abstract goals is that they are often forgotten about.

That’s when I stumbled across the idea of oneword365. While I’m unsure if they are the real starters of the concept, I know that the idea on their website is the one that I ran with. The idea is that by picking a word you can build on the concept. The website cites the idea that you pick ‘One word you can focus on every day, all year long… One word that sums up who you want to be or how you want to live. It will take intentionality and commitment, but if you let it, your one word will shape not only your year, but also you. It will become the compass that directs your decisions and guides your steps.

If you’re struggling to pick a word, try the square below. Psychology tells us that we are most likely to see the words that we want to say anyway. Try not to overthink it. Imagine what your ideal life will look like and think beyond that. I know how wishy washy this all sounds but I’m an advocate of what to do after and how it can help you propel forwards.

Now what? Thankfully, after the wishy washy mambo jambo and overthinking the word, you can get down to the nitty gritty.

1.) Write the word down. Save it somewhere.

2.) You’re going to make this visible. I didn’t do this enough this year and will next.

3.) Take a deep dive of words. Define it. Write What it means to you? Why is it important to you/ society?

4.) This is where I put my flair on things and I think it makes it more actionable. I know that this is not the point of the one word challenge but for me as an analytical individual (read surrounded by idiots) I need some sort of action to be able to visualise it.

5.) Decide the outcome of those targets. Keep them measurable. This isn’t a blog on the traditional S.M.A.R.T. but you can use it if you want.

So how did I use it? At first, in 2019, I think I went too vague. I chose the word flourish. To be fair, the word had good grounding. I’d just moved to Dubai, into a new job, started becoming more consistent with YouTube and I knew that now that I was comfortable, I wanted to blossom (that could be a word). I decided that one goal would be to start to become more regular with my uploads. It was the first year that I released a video every week. I started Insta and in some ways I flourished.

2020 = triumph. I decided to go hard or go home and managed an upload schedule of 2 videos per week and although I triumphed over the uncertainty of the new COVID disaster, the channel grew and I triumphed. Take it from me though… I didn’t have enough to work towards.

This year then, I decided that I needed something a little bit more rational, something actionable: organisation. I then broke the word and concept down and invested heavily in systems to support ‘organisation’. My partner and I would have meetings about the goals for the month. I would write things down. I use systems to manage productivity and although there have been stagnant periods, for the most part, it worked. MY organisation improvements have allowed me to remain consistent with uploads while also writing 2 guides and starting to produce new content on TikTok and my new website. It’s been incredibly exciting. I’ll make a video discussing the systems I’ve used and this will then become a blog.

So Thomas…this year? Well… the word is collaborate. Despite being organised, I’ve been truly terrible with collaborations. I started Dubai diaries earlier this year on instagram but that fizzled out over the holidays and ‘time blocking’ (organizational strategy) the wrong day. Next year, I want to collaborate with more companies that I regularly use to benefit my life and teaching and I want to share more stories and advice from teachers around the world. This forms a significant part of the Teach. Travel. Triumph. ethos.

This is where you come in. We need to… ‘collaborate’! I need you to decide your word. Choose your system. Then, with that, write It down in the comments of this blog. I’d love to know how you are going to achieve your goals and what your word is going to hopefully allow you to do.

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