Designing The Single Most Best Year of Your Life Yet

2016 went by in the blink of an eye and it will just be a memory in our minds. If you think about it, life’s like that. Seems like a long journey but the bus of life is quite fast. Miss those precious moments and beautiful vistas outside of the windows, you’ll be sorry since those moments never come back. Given the fragility of life, it’s extremely important to sit down and design the journey. In this article, we’ll look at a process of designing the year ahead so the 12 fresh months in front of us to become all that we dream of.

1. Party on top of the bus

To kick start 2017 in high-gear, take some time to celebrate the wins, achievements, positive moments, memorable encounters, special people, and happy times of the last year. Start listing the moments of joy, both big and small, that brought sparkle in your eyes. Tune into those moments and feel the feelings of joy, peace and goodness. Amplify the emotional vibes that you felt during those moments. By doing this, you should be charged with positivity, confidence and optimism.

2. Learn from the ride

Contemplate on 2016 and note down all the lessons you can learn personally, professionally, socially, and spiritually. This is the step that most contributes to you as an individual since the lessons from the syllabus of school of life is unique to you. And each one has the potential to re-script every aspect of it should you choose to learn. Here is a place for you to record all the mistakes, false assumptions and less-than-excellent choices you’ve made in the last year along with the price you’ve had to pay for it. You need be doubly cautious and not repeat the same mistakes in the new year. Here you can also design some counter-habits, creative rituals and new initiatives so you can be sure of not repeating them or better prepared to make higher choices in similar circumstances.

A mistake is only a mistake if it’s done twice. Robin Sharma

3. Where do you want to go?

For this step, please take all the necessary time you want and don’t rush. Here you are fixing your destination. The targets you set here will drive the entire year toward. So be audacious, ambitious and a little crazy when you’re setting your Big 5 — the five big things you must achieve before the 31st December of 2017 for you feel that you’ve lived the best year of your life yet. Don’t sabotage yourself by setting ego goals in order to fit into the society or be liked by others. Be authentic and choose your destination that resonates with your truest self. In other words, choose to become an iconic poet instead of a fat banker.

If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there. Cheshire cat, Alice in Wonderland

4. Create the map

With your Big goals and destinations fixed in the key areas of your life, now take them down into street level micro-goals so you can execute them on a daily basis. Sometimes we don’t set giant goals because they look large to achieve. But if we split them down into tiny and achievable targets of action, they’ll transform to be within our reach. In this step, set the quarterly goal or monthly goals that will eventually take to your big goals or grand destination.

A journey of thousand miles begins with a single step. Lao-Tzu

5. Set the GPS

Now you’ve recorded the celebrations and lessons you learnt from the last year, set the big and macro goals for the year, and graduated them into monthly micro-goals and plans of actions. You would surely feel very optimistic and energized by now. Chances are more that you can’t to wait to make this vision happen. Now use that energy to visualize in great detail and in vivid colors of your goals already reached and you becoming the person you dreamed of becoming. The key word is here is already, there should zero obstacle for you to visualize your success. If not, reassess your goals and motivations. Once you can visualize your success effortlessly, you’ve already traveled half-way toward your glorious destination. The rest of the journey is just auto-pilot!

Imagine with all your mind. Believe with all your heart. Achieve with all your might. Jill Conyers

HAPPY NEW YEAR 2017. Nail it with the most exquisite of goals 🙂

Mastery Session Deconstruction: Mentors and Lessons

mentor

Author and leadership consultant Robin Sharma has been putting out some seriously awesome and content-rich material out into the Internet. The Mastery Sessions are his weekly class on personal mastery and leadership excellence. He encourages the students and listeners to deconstruct and reflect on what they have learned from his coaching videos and podcasts in the journal. Most importantly, he challenges his followers (like me) to act on his ideas. As he puts it elegantly, “ideation without execution is nothing more than delusion”. The deconstruction posts like this one captures the important and invaluable lessons I’ve learned from Robin’s videos, which aids reflection and contemplation on his great ideas.

The mastery session of today’s deconstruction is 5 Leadership Lessons My Mentors Have Taught Me. This particular mastery session is packed with extremely profound and act-now-or-you-will-be-sorry ideas which have the potential to re-write our personal as well as professional lives.

Importance of Mentors

Robin starts the session with a quick and gentle suggestion to get mentors in our lives as swiftly as possible. The reason behind that is The Law of Association, the concept of which dates back to pre-civilization era. Our brains have in their coding to model, imitate and follow the people which we spend most of our times with. The Mirror Neurons of the brain fire not only when they independently perform an action, but also when they observe an action performed by another person. Because of this fundamental nature of our brains, it’s extremely important to choose excellent people in our day-to-day lives.

I started off my BE life as an average student. Just by sitting next to one of the brilliant guys of the class named Jagannath everyday, I mastered almost all the subjects. I became an eloquent speaker just by choosing a guy who had great communication skill as my roommate in hostel! It’s quite an effortless and enjoyable process. The brain automagically picks up and models the behavior of the people around us.

As we move along with our lives, it’s such an essential and smart move to get our associations to world-class. Mentors need not be a consultant or service. A mentor is someone who is at the next level professionally, personally, financially or even spiritually. A mentor is someone who is living your dreams and aspirations. Someone whose very thought gets you out of bed and inspires you to work hard throughout the day. He or she can be your mother or immediate friend, or someone living in remote corner of the world. The mentor can be an historic figure such as Picasso or Michelangelo. Take all the necessary time to pick your heroes/heroines. Let your model be someone whom you resonate with and has already realized most, if not all of your aspirations.

Getting the Mentorship

I can think of two ways of getting yourself rubbed off by the ideas of your mentors:

  1. Direct mentorship: Strive all your might to get direct mentorship if that person is really what you aspire to be. There’s something about personal touch which stands apart from other modes of influence.
  2. Indirect mentorship: If you can’t afford to get a mentor or your icon is an historic figure, there are equally effective ways to get their mentorship!
    • Books: In my opinion, books are the greatest mentors you’ll ever get. Even under direct mentorship, the mentor along with sharing his wisdom and experience urges you to read a ton of books that have shaped his thinking.
    • Blogs: This is current generation medium of knowledge dissemination. Blogs are great in that they are specific and experiential. If you’re a programmer, you know how much fun and interesting it is to read the brilliant blogs such as joel on software or coding horror.
    • Podcasts: Podcasts of most of the famous books and industry leaders are available for free. Podcasts are handy way of carrying the knowledge-giver with you, especially while commuting or standing in a queue in a grocery shop etc.
    • Videos: The mentors’ videos provide the same intimacy and personal touch if they were talking to you in person.

Work hard and put effort to find and model the best of the best in your field. The results you get will more than compensate your efforts. Not only do they make you successful, their company is transformative. And they fill your life with hope and inspiration.

The Five Leadership Lessons

1. Run Your Own Race

This one is my personal favourite. Run your own race simply means coming up with our vision and staying true to it. It’s about measuring our success by how close we to our vision. This attitude is recognizable in every successful person. As Robin says, there’s no competition if we stay in our own lane.

2. Be Willing To Be Eccentric

To run our own race or to be a visionary, it’s imperative to take the road less travelled. The act of taking a detour from the norms means disruption to the people around us. This inevitably causes friction and criticism. Nonetheless, it’s the very thing that causes progress to society. So role up your sleeves, stand boldly in the face of ridicule and keep chasing your dreams.

3. Stand for World-class

Another key idea for phenomenal success. The standard by which we operate speaks volumes about us. Robin suggests us to raise the standard of lifestyle, performance, food, friends, conversations and everything we touch. Truly a great idea that can elevate every aspect of our lives.

4. Be Deep vs. Be Light

Robin illustrates this idea by sharing his experience in a restaurant in which the lemon wedges given to his tea on his request were de-seeded. Go deep, he reinforces several times as the world seem to be embracing superficiality and being light.

5. Be Kind 

This idea is a touching one. Simple, yet profound. The fundamental lesson taught to him from one of his mentors near the end of his life. Being kind in not a weakness, but a strength. It’s so easy to be angry on someone. But it takes character power to be kind even when you have all the rights to be unkind.