Ben Franklin was a huge proponent of self-improvement. Early in his adult life Ben developed a list of 13 virtues and a plan to achieve perfection in each area. He ultimately gave up on the specific quest but I’m quite sure the process worked. Centuries later, we still see the fruits of Ben Franklin’s efforts in business, science, diplomacy and civic life.
I used to be all about goal-setting and using the new year as a motivating force for new directions. Something in me changed a few years ago and I stopped dreaming. Not sure what, exactly, changed or happened but I think I have an idea. Let’s just say that, about two years ago, I finally got out a hole. And then I walked through a new door.
The past 18 months have offered a different set of unique challenges. I’ve put everything I have into meeting and rising above those challenges. Although I don’t know what the future holds, I’m confident I’ll come out where I need to be.
In light of all that, it’s time to dream again. It’s time to imagine what can be, not what is. And time to do what’s necessary to make those dreams come true.
Read a blog post this morning: Chris Brogan’s “3 Words for 2011″ that set me to thinking about goal-setting and resolutions in a different way. Chris writes about about the three words that will guide him during 2011. He also offers up a list of the words submitted by a number of his readers/followers. I decided to use this list to identify and/or inspire the words that seem to best reflect what I need to do to achieve success.
These are the words I’m working with right now:
* Focus, Thrive, Act/Do (Effort), Discipline
* Fitness, Simplicity, Renew
* Produce, Create, Write
* Dream, Ask, Launch
* Confidence, Manifest
The groupings sort of fell into place as I played with the list.
Initial reactions upon pondering the list briefly:
* Fitness and health are already overarching themes in my life so they will probably come out of the mix. I’m already quite fit, except for strength-training–I definitely have room for improvement in that area and need to add weight-training as a goal.
* I see simplicity as more of a value than an action verb.
Obviously, I’m still refining at the moment, but I’ll probably end up with three or four key, defining values for the year and three or four words to motivate and direct my intentions and actions.
What do you think?