4 Steps to Make Big Change Happen
I love September.
The energy is fresh and clean. Change is in the air, and you can actually feel it. The leaves on the trees are transforming to vivid reds and yellows. Kids are excited about going back to school. The weather is cooler (unless you’re in Texas, like me — oh how I wish it would cool down faster!)
Everyone likes to make resolutions and big life changes on New Year’s Eve. But here’s the thing: It doesn’t need to be New Year’s Eve to get inspired to make changes for the better.
If you know you need a big change in your life, the best time to start is now! And the freshness of September is the perfect opportunity to help things along.
Unfortunately, lot of us get stuck in analysis paralysis. If you want change, but do nothing different, then nothing will change. If you want something different, then you’ve got to do something different.
You have to begin now. If you don’t know where to start, that’s okay! Just start anyway. Take the first step. Don’t get stuck in your head. A lot of us are perfectionists and want everything to be perfect right from the beginning. We want to see the whole path. But we can’t see the whole path, so we never start.
Once you take those first few steps, it gets easier. It creates momentum that snowballs. But the toughest part is to get started. Fear will stop you.
I use the steps below whenever I’m feeling stuck, and so I thought I’d pass them along in the hopes they can help someone else!
Ready? Let’s go.
“If we all did the things we are capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves.” –Thomas Edison
1. Brain Dump
First, let’s brain dump. What are the things you want to achieve or experience over the next 12 months?
It’s time to brainstorm. This is the fun part! Get out a notebook and pen (I personally use my laptop because I can type a million times faster than I can write, but for some people this stifles their creativity. Know yourself and do what works for you).
The most important here is to NOT hold back or censor yourself. This is why it’s called a “brain dump.”
Think in terms of your health and fitness goals, mindset, relationships, career, finance, or anything else that’s important to you. As you write, more and more ideas will come to you. Write everything down without judging yourself and be as specific as possible. Really use this time to be creative and dream big.
2. Narrow it Down
If you try to do it all, you’ll end up feeling overwhelmed. Now take a look at your brainstorming, and start to purge. Be absolutely ruthless.
Pick just a couple of things to focus on for now. It’s hugely important that each of these goals really excite you! If you don’t care enough, then you won’t be inspired to work towards it when the going gets rough. So don’t pick a goal that you just think you “should” pick for one reason or another. Pick a goal that really revs your engine!
“If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy, and inspires your hopes.” -Andrew Carnegie
If you’re really struggling to narrow it down, think about your values. WHO do you want to become this next year? What’s truly important to you?
3. Break it Down
Next, we want to break these big goals down into short-term goals so you can TAKE ACTION.
You want these short-term goals to be actual steps you can take. These short-term steps need to be specific, measurable, and timely (meaning you can assign a date to their completion).
For example, maybe one of your big yearly goals is to lose weight. To help achieve the weight loss goal, one of your short-term goals could be to drink more water.
So then, let’s get super specific. How many glasses of water do you want to drink per day? How can you make this change easy for yourself (fill up water bottles the night before, put reminders where you’ll see them, etc)? Can you keep track of the amount you drink somewhere; maybe log it in your journal?
4. Make it Reality
If you finished #3, your big goals should now be broken down into doable steps that you can take action on.
Now it’s time to schedule each of these steps. I’m a big believer in scheduling everything. If it’s not scheduled, it’s not likely to happen.
Life can be messy. We’re juggling a lot of different things. If we’re not organized, if the things we want to happen are not clearly defined and scheduled, then it’s easy for them to get lost in the whirlwind of daily craziness.
Want an easy and fun way to schedule? As your personal cheerleader and biggest fan, I’ve created a gift for you: an awesome daily action plan printable!
It has a section to plan your day’s to-do list, a section for tomorrow’s plans, an inspiration section where you can write quotes (or whatever fuels you), and even an spot to plan your meals out! It’s super cute and perfect for sticking up on your fridge.
And guess what?
It’s 100% free! I really want to make it simple for you to implement these steps that I’ve outlined here. Download it below:
*Note: If you’re already a subscriber to my mailing list, this won’t work. But don’t worry; the download link will be included (along with other goodies) in my monthly email to you! Make sure to check your inbox!
No matter what you do, if you follow these steps or not, the most important thing is to just begin. Do something! Anything.
“The most successful people in the world are those who have taken the time to figure out exactly who they want to become and what they want to achieve. Then they invest the hours of their days in activities consistent with these ideals.” –Tommy Newberry
Leave a comment below and tell me all about what you’re most excited to accomplish this year!