• Rachael Ferguson

Kick start the new year

My easy guide to planning the year ahead

Now is the best time to plan for the new year. Yes now… start planning in the first two weeks of 2022. With 2021 long gone, people still on holidays and businesses running on skeleton staff, now is the ideal time to start planning your success for 2022.

“The best time to start was yesterday. The next best time is now.”

Make the most of the quiet time to plan ahead

Before the year gets too busy, use this quiet time for planning, which offers a good opportunity to look back on the year that was, assess all the good things that happened in the previous year, as well as allow yourself time to reflect on any challenging and powerful learning experiences of 2021. So there’s no time like the present, let’s get started!

Then once you have done that, you can move on to planning your goals for the new year.

Here’s my top tips on planning for a year of success, in all aspects of your life.

Key factors in kick starting your new year

These tips will get you organised and ready to achieve a great deal in 2022.

First and foremost, spend some time jotting down your thoughts on what’s important to you so you can then map out the plans to bring them to fruition.

Make a list of things you want to achieve this year, activities you want to do or just things to help you look after yourself better. It gives you a goal to work towards and is a constant reminder of what you wanted at the start of the year.

  • Here are some ideas on to get you started: What would a successful 2022 look like to you?

  • How can you create a few measurable goals that you really want to achieve?

  • Are you wanting to improve your revenue by 20% or hire an assistant to help?

  • Are you wanting to boost your health habits, possibly take that new fitness class or start walking daily?

  • Maybe you want more item specific goals such as purchasing a new car, buying a new home or taking a holiday?

Getting crystal clear with your goals and aspirations for yourself is empowering. At first just write anything that comes to mind even if it seems silly or too crazy. Want to learn a new skill? Start a new job? Move house? Once you have articulated your goals, break them down into monthly and quarterly metrics. Plan out how you will achieve the goals, and what help you might need to get there.

Vision Board

Next step for me is to create a vision board, as it can be a fun activity providing some clarity over what I really want to achieve. It also helps set some accountability for the new year. Vision boards can be digital on a computer, the hands-on scrap book design or even a whiteboard on the fridge where you can see it every single day - you can even do it with your kids.

Adding steps to your planner

At the beginning of each year, I buy myself a gorgeous planner ( I bought this one from Kikki K this year). This is where I break down the goals a little further and map out what I need to do to ensure I reach and achieve my goals. I also keep everything in there, so I don’t lose important information or follow-ups from meetings.

Setting goals for the new year

When it comes to planning my goals, I like to look at my life holistically: so, I take a bird’s eye view of my family and home life, work and/or business, my own self-care & health, and time management efforts.

I generally like to have 3 personal and 3 business goals for the year. Below are a few of mine to help you get started:

Family and home life

  • Nutrition – One of my consistent goals is to eat healthily to ensure my family are strong and well. I like to review our food habits and reset our eating plans to bring in some variety. You might look at your current cooking schedule, or even doing your meal prep on the weekend to save time mid-week. Or even consider a meal delivery service to save yourself some time. Every now and then I will do Hello Fresh just to give myself a break from meal planning.

  • Finances – I like to look at 1-2 big financial goals per year and focus my energies on achieving those goals.

Work and business

  • Career goals - write your top 3 business or career goals for this year and then put them where you can see them daily (on your vision board, or in your planner). You might want to start your own business, grow your existing side hustle, or scale up a successful business.

Tips to help you

  • Eat the Frog – applying this method is a great approach to your overall goals process… you can do this for the year’s goals as well as your daily to-do list… by always start with the two hardest tasks on the list first, then move across to the tasks.

  • Time blocking in your diary – this is an invaluable tool for my never-ending to-do-list. Blocking out time in your diary for certain non-negotiable matters, ie meetings with team members, scheduling your social media content, doing invoicing will help you tick off all the other goals on your list.

Now once you have your goals for the year it’s time to start achieving them. I strongly believe that achieving your goals stems from a healthy and positive mindset. So for me it’s part of the goal achieving process to spend time on my mindset every single day.

Get your healthy mind on track to tackle your goals

  • Meditation – I find my daily meditation practice highly beneficial to my overall state of mind. So I strongly recommend you try it out too, or find another way to relax and switch off from the world even if for just 15 minutes a day. Every bit helps.

  • Gratitude journal - I write in my gratitude journal at the end of each day. I leave it on my bedside table so it’s the last thing I do before going to bed. I find it very grounding to reflect on what I’m grateful for.

  • Exercise - start with achievable goals by doing a few things that will be sustainable throughout the year. We all slip out of habits sometimes, but this is a good chance to re-set.

Ready to kick-start your new year?

Staying focussed on your goals is paramount - set small, measurable goals and focus on one project at a time. Also try to schedule time off/gaps in your diary.

Creating a plan for your personal life as well as your business or career can be fun and exciting. And now is the best time to create a plan for 2022.

If you’re looking for more advice and guidance on kick starting a fab new year, then follow @rachael.ferguson on Instagram and keep an eye out for my new podcast coming soon.

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