Well hello there!
I’m sure you’ve probably read the title of this blog post and thought to yourself, “um, does Sonia realise we’re nearly at the end of January?” and you’re right – I do realise that – but you know what? I didn’t hit the ground running when the calendar flipped over to 1 January 2018.
Far from it.
I was still having a break, still very much in holiday mode and just not ready to kick into overdrive.
Fast forward to today and I’m still not quite ready.
Don’t get me wrong – I’ve been back at work for the past few weeks and I’ve also had a goal setting session with the husband, but as for making huge, grand changes? Nup. Not even close. And you know what? That’s totally OK by me.
I had an awesome Skype conversation with a very good friend of mine the other day and she asked me if I had a word for 2018.
I told her that I didn’t have a word or a label for this year. Instead, I’m just all about getting things done. My attitude and my philosophy for 2018 is to identify what I want to do (as well as what I don’t want to do) and go for it. Make it happen.
I also don’t have any resolutions. Yes, I’ve set goals but they are very realistic and doable, so I’m setting myself up for success. And I will get them done (cos that’s my thing this year).
You see, this year – 2018 – I have a really good feeling about it. I don’t know how it will play out and I know it won’t be without its challenges, but I know in my heart that things will work out as and when they are supposed to and I know, overall, it’s all going to be alright.
This got me thinking about how I should share my hopes for 2018 with you and how we can make sure that we take very good care of ourselves and make the most of this year… and I landed on 5 things.
5 ways to own 2018
1. Look good, feel good
I don’t know about you, but when I think I look good, I feel so much more confident.
For me, this comes about in a few different ways – a blow dry, having my nails painted, a spray tan… but it’s also exercising regularly and eating really healthily most of the time.
Setting time aside for the things that make me feel good (and ultimately, look good) makes such a huge difference. As a woman. As a wife. As a business owner. As a friend.
When I’m doing these things for myself, I feel like I’m Happy Sonia, Productive Sonia, Healthy Sonia, The Best Version of Sonia That I Can Be.
I don’t think any of the things that I love are superficial or vain in the slightest because I’m taking care of myself and they’re all things that make me happy.
What makes you feel good? Be honest. Write a list and then take out your diary and start scheduling those things in like you would a meeting or an appointment. And most importantly? Don’t cancel on yourself.
2. Plan, schedule, prepare
What’s that old saying? “Fail to plan, plan to fail.”
There are so many cliches out there around planning and preparing, but they are so true!
January is the perfect time to plan the year ahead. To schedule in what you want to achieve. And to get prepared to take action in order to achieve your goals.
I’ve heard quite a few people refer to January as a “practice month” – a time that you can use to ease into the new year, get all your ducks in a row and then hit the ground running when February rolls around.
I am all for this! And I’m doing this.
I’m still “business as usual” but I’m also quietly working away in the background, setting goals, making plans, booking myself into workshops and courses – all from February onwards.
Consider this your permission slip to use the next week or two to plan, schedule and prepare… and then let’s start owning this year come February! Are you with me?
3. Find your tribe… and a coach
I’m also using this month to meet with/talk to/Skype with all the friends who inspire me.
Talking to those people re-energises me, and because I trust them implicitly, I am completely honest with them and ask for their advice. After an hour, I find that I’ve downloaded an app or two, discovered a solution to a problem, identified my next step and have a huge smile on my face. So. GOOD!
The other (big) thing I’m doing is locking in dates to work on the tasks I’ve been putting off (erm, hello there non-existent Scribe and Social website!) and I’ve also taken a rather bold step for me and booked in a coaching session with someone who I think will be really good for me, personally and professionally.
I feel like I spend all of my days helping others – with their social media, with their copywriting, with their business – but now I really need someone who can help me. Someone who understands the industry I’m in, but doesn’t do exactly what I do. Someone impartial. Someone knowledgeable and slightly ahead of the game than I am.
And, excitingly, I think I’ve found her!
We have our first coaching session in a couple of weeks time, so I will keep you posted on that and report back.
If you’re a business owner, find someone you trust. In fact, find a couple of friends who are also business owners and lock in regular (fortnightly, monthly) coffee or Skype dates. Use the time to download, debrief and make decisions. It really is a game changer.
And, if you need something more, find a coach who you connect with and let them help guide you to the next level.
4. Positive daily reminders
I recently changed up my morning routine (which I’ll share with you in a future blog post) and it has seriously been the best thing for my weekdays.
The first thing I do after I get up is go to our lounge room, pop in my headphones and meditate.
I use the Insight Timer app and select a guided meditation (usually around 10-15 minutes long).
It clears my mind and my energy and literally resets me for the day ahead. I can’t explain how much I love it and how much of a difference it has made to my headspace and my mood.
After that, I write in my gratitude journal.
I bought a little gratitude journal from Kikki.K and all I have to do is write 3 things that I’m grateful for. Sometimes they’re super simple and light, other times they’re quite deep and thoughtful.
I feel like it’s a really nice download of positivity and another little thing I can do to start my day on a happy note.
All up, doing those 2 things only takes about 20 minutes so I set my alarm for 30 minutes earlier than normal and I can assure you with every fibre of my being that it is time well spent.
5. Relaxation and me time
I work really hard during the week to make sure I can enjoy my weekends.
Last year, I worked 7 days a week and ridiculous hours to run my business, this blog and also work a 4-day-a-week corporate job. It was madness! I was burnt out, stressed out, a crap wife and friend, and just generally a miserable shell of a human being.
Now that I work for myself, I’ve decided that I will work hard and smart during the week to get everything done (well, pretty much everything – I’m not a robot!) and my weekends are reserved for my husband and our friends. Quality time spent with the people I love.
It strikes the right balance between work and play and makes me a much nicer person to be around!
Also, one other thing I’m trying to get better at is regular Me Time.
Nothing crazy or outlandish, just a little bit of time on a regular basis to do things that I enjoy.
Read a book. Listen to a podcast. Go for a massage.
Things that feed my mind and soul, and also give me a break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
So I urge you to think about the things you enjoy purely for yourself and allocate a little time – once a week, if you can – to do them and enjoy them. You need it and you deserve it.