By Amanda Morrall
As most of you regular readers know, I'm a goal setting junkie. I confess my documentation is a bit messy (i.e. they're on scraps of paper and virtual sticky notes on my iPad, and laptop, floating around in my hand-bag or on the fridge) but they have been translated from ideas in my head to thoughts on paper which is the important thing. Sometimes I get a bit cynical and think it's all pie in the sky stuff. Then on the occasions when I take time to reflect and review I'm amazed to see the progress.
Transitioning from full-time journalist this year to a part-time journalist and a part-time yoga instructor will presents numerous challenges, financial and otherwise, so I'm back at the drawing board again refining and tweaking.
As I mentioned in my first column of 2013, fear is often the biggest obstacle you need to overcome in order to start moving in the direction of your dreams. Planning is a good way to conquer one's fears but there's a host of other mental landmines and logistical challenges to deal with as well. I thought I'd address some of those today for the benefit of all you readers with change on the agenda for 2013.
1) Making more money
For many, the aim of 2013 may simply be to make more money. Yes, yes, we all know money in and of itself won't make you happy but it does buy us freedom and choice.
Here's machine gun personal finance guru Ramit Sethi with a practical and concrete 10 step programme to earning more money.
2) Measurable objectives
It's one thing knowing where we want to go and what we want to achieve, and another thing entirely getting there. Strategy is everything.
Here's some constructive thoughts and suggestions on how to create measurable objectives from a blogger known as brasstackthinking.
3) Dealing with setbacks
Knock backs are inevitable in life. It's just part of the learning process. You don't want to doom yourself by anticipating failure before you've even written your first blog or sold your first x,y,z. Instead, you'll want to accept the possibility that things will take a different course than planned. It's how you deal with the unexpected and the knock backs that determines success. This blog from techrepublic offers 10 ways to deal with setbacks you might face this year or in future years as you venture further in the direction of your goals.
4) Master and mentor
Mentors are another excellent resource to help you achieve your goals. So what qualities should one look for in a mentor? Author Robert Greene and Radio New Zealand host Jim Mora discussed this issue in depth yesterday while talking about Greene's latest book Mastery. A fascinating conversation covering a range of related topics including self mastery, discipline and adaptability. Great stuff. For those of you who missed it, the interview can be downloaded from the Radio NZ website here. See also Greene's lecture to the Oxford Union captured on video below.
A real power tool to all of the above is meditation. Screeds of scientific evidence now supports how a regular practice can help to reduce stress, improve health outcomes, sharpen mental clarity and fight insomnia etc. Meditation has a strong tie in to self-mastering, and if you listen to the interview with Robert Greene linked to above you'll understand why. If you are interested in learning more, Kadampa Buddhist Centre is offering a one-day course March 2nd, at the Takapuna War Memorial Hall. For more details, see www.meditateinauckland.org