I realise the title is weird but bear with me – I’m taking you on a journey.
I’ve always found the ushering in of the New Year really interesting, everyone suddenly becomes super reflective. Somewhere between the ending of November and the lead up to mid-December, we begin to reminisce about the highs that we experienced during the year and brood over the moments we could have done better. We tell ourselves that we will do better and employ phrases like, “new year, new me” to reinforce our wishful thinking and although having the desire is the first step to reaching your potential, it’s not the only step.
I want to implore you to set goals for yourself and then work backwards. I was introduced to the concept of working backwards a few years ago when I was trying to figure out the direction my life was going in. I knew I wanted to do ‘x’ but that was all I knew. However, when I considered the weight of that statement I changed my thinking. I asked myself, “Ok Cristine, you want to get to x, how many modes of transport will I have to take to get there? What do I have to do to get to where I want to be?” I then began to plot.
Steve Jobs once said,”You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards.” I knew the end goal, but I now had to work out what each step before that would look like. I drew pictures of roads in order to properly appreciate the importance of the exercise and I researched other people who were where I envisioned for myself and was keen to find out how they got there. I plotted. This year, don’t just cling to wishful thinking. Get out of your mind and do the work.
P.S. If you need more information on backwards planning, Google is your friend. Oh, and I hope you got the Sat Nav metaphor.