You don’t need to make 30 resolutions. You don’t need to update your massive list of goals. You don’t need to set mystifying expectations to impress everyone on Facebook.
You are over-thinking it.
Here are the two best pieces of advice I’ve read in all the run-ups to the new year:
1. Stop worrying about goals. Set up systems instead. Create a system, executed regularly, that ultimately leads to achieving the goal. Focus on the system instead. [I've seen this all over the internet. Have no idea to whom to attribute it to. Sorry.]
2. Don’t set yearly, or even monthly, goals. Focus on today. Just one day. Not yesterday. Not tomorrow. Today. [This is from Austin Kleon.]
That’s it. That’s what I am going to do. A very simple focus.
Most people analyze the coming year with great fanfare, and lay out all kinds of plans, schemes, lists, and timetables.
Why they do this, year after year, I don’t know. Those bold, ambitious, and (overly) complicated plans mostly fail.
And why this exercise HAS TO happen around January 1st is also frustrating. “Every passing minute is another chance to turn it all around,” said some actress in Vanilla Sky. Truth.
Look, I am guilty of this too. I can probably point you to a handful of old posts here that talk about a lot of these things.
But no more. I am simplifying things considerably here.
I am also NOT suggesting you can go through life with no actual goals, as many writers on the interwebs suggest.
You clearly have to know where you would like to go.
But too many of us focus on the very distant finish line.
Instead, we need to focus on the very next step.
So take it.
And Happy New Year!
2013 was the best year yet in terms of folks joining the mailing list. So pleased many of you are with me. CLICK HERE to join the Intrepid family!
Drawing by Hugh.