As we come to the end of another year, the natural inclination for many is to begin to look towards the next year and focus on various areas of improvement. Perhaps you’re resolving to lose weight or exercise more. Maybe you’re considering a new diet or to save more money than last year. Resolutions can be fun, but the majority of us don’t accomplish them. We also have the tendency to look towards the next thing and look at all the ways in which we are lacking. While it is wonderful to be aware of areas of growth, it can also be beneficial to take some time to look at your accomplishments and how you have changed.
Unfortunately, this can be a time to compare ourselves to others and their accomplishments which can make us feel as though we have nothing to be proud of. I invite you to be mindful of this tendency to compare and notice when it’s happening. Perhaps you can insert an affirmation when you notice comparisons such as “I’ve decided that I am enough.” or “I have the power to change my story.” This year we have the ability to look back at the last decade, and see how different we’ve become over the years. This is becoming more popular with social media and challenges people are engaging in (#10yearchallenge), but we can take it a little deeper. As you are taking time to reflect on the past 10 years, consider journaling about the following questions:
- 10 years ago did I imagine my life as it is now?
- How is it the same as what I thought it would be?
- How is it different?
- Have I passed any milestones that I’m proud of?
- Who has been important in my life the past 10 years?
- What are 10 things I’ve learned over the past 10 years?
- Where have I been in the past 10 years?
- What is the motto of the last 10 years of my life?
Now that you’ve had the chance to do some reflecting on the past 10 years, we can look ahead to the future and set SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time-Sensitive) goals for what we hope to accomplish in the next 10 years of our lives. Consider the following questions as starting point:
- Am I living true to myself?
- How am I doing this well?
- How can I improve?
- What matters most in my life?
- Who am I surrounding myself with?
- Am I happy with my relationships?
- Where do I want to go in the next 10 years?
- What quote or words would I like to live the next 10 years by?
There are many more questions that you may feel inclined to reflect on, follow those! The more self awareness we have the easier it is to set goals. Setting SMART goals is something that we at Original Path Counseling can help you with as well. We can work together to keep you accountable and make goals that move you towards a life that you are satisfied with. Who is your best self?