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Volume 13, Issue 05: How Was January?

When I look at my past day or even week and see the messes I make, I am grateful for the opportunity each new day or week brings for me to begin again and do better. We are now at the start of a new month and I don't want to miss the opportunity to reflect on the just ended month of January.

We have come to the end of the first month of the year. It's a good time to pause and reflect on whether we are on course on not before we go far into the year.

I recently read somewhere that every moment is an opportunity to begin again. That taking time for self reflection is an important habit for one's growth and wellbeing. And it doesn't have to be limited to the start of the year.

Reflecting allows you to validate, celebrate, and learn from your experiences, which can inform how you move mindfully into the rest of the year.

Here are some questions to inspire your January reflections:

  • How would you describe your January?
  • What did you learn?
  • What achievement do you need to celebrate?
  • Is there anything you would change if you were to go back to the start of the year?
  • If you could go back to the start of the year, what advice would you give yourself?

And as you get started with the new month of February, here are a few questions to consider:

  • Would you say you are happy with the way you are doing so far?
  • Would you say you are off to a good start?
  • Are there areas you need to correct course?
  • Are there areas you need to double down on?

 

For His Glory,

Lillian Chebosi

 

 

Volume 13, Issue 04: Becoming

I recently pondered over a question posed by James Clear. He asked, "Who are you trying to become this year? What actions will reinforce that identity?" This question caught my attention, but I didn't know what to do with it at the time except park it for later. Taking a moment to ponder over it today brought out some of the key things that are important to me this year.

When I asked myself what I want to become this year, here's what came to the fore.

  • I want to be person of respect - a respectful person
  • I want to be a person who loves deeply
  • I want to be a person who extends grace unreservedly
  • I want to be a person who makes people feel valuable

I am yet to come up with one phrase that combines all these. But what's more important is figuring out how I am going to become that person. Here are the actions I reckon will enforce that identity.

  • To be a respectful person, I must speak about others as if they were present, thereby refuse to engage in conversations that I wouldn't engage in if the subject of the conversation were present.
  • To be a person who loves deeply, I must be guided by love and loyalty at all times.
  • To be a person who extends grace unreservedly, I must act and respond with extravagant grace even when it is not deserved.
  • To be a person who makes people feel valuable, I must make an effort to notice and to draw people out and to focus on them when am in their presence. I must make my time with people about them. Affirm them. Encourage them.

I have ways to go to polish this. But I am glad to have got it out of myself to start with. I purpose to polish it then print it out and put it where I can see it everyday to remind me to live it out.

Now it's your turn. Who do you want to become this year? What actions do you need to take to reinforce that identity?

 

For His Glory,

Lillian Chebosi

 

 

Volume 13, Issue 03: Focus on Habits

By this time in the new year, many people are still excited about the goals they have set for the new year, still hopeful of attaining success where they have done poorly before. However, most people fail to follow through on their goals by embracing the necessary habits and making the lifestyle adjustments to achieve optimal results.

Goals are good, but they don't get you where you want to go. What gets results is goal-oriented habits. Therefore, to get better results, one must build better habits. New habits in the right direction translate to a new lifestyle, which lived overtime, produces new results.

"New goals don't deliver new results. New lifestyles do. And a lifestyle is a process, not an outcome. For this reason, all of your energy should go into building better habits, not chasing better results." James Clear.

Placing a lot of emphasis on results, especially during the initial stages of pursuing a goal can lead to abandoning the goal all together when results aren't forthcoming. It takes time and repeated effort to start seeing results. Therefore, once you figure out what it takes to get the results you want, keep your focus on that instead.

If you are serious about getting better results with your goals this year, focus on building better habits and making the necessary lifestyle adjustments that come with new habits. Be willing to be comfortable with the discomfort that accompanies the initial stages of habit formation and lifestyle change.

 

For His Glory,

Lillian Chebosi

 

 

Volume 13, Issue 02: Take Stock

Did you take time to pause and reflect at the end last year? In case you didn't, it's not too late to do so now. The time is still right to take stock of your achievements from the ended year before settling into the new year.

Take stock of your accomplishments for last year. What were your achievements? What were your challenges? What lessons did you learn that you need to embrace in the new year? In what areas did you experience growth? Where do you need to make improvements?

Once you do this, you will be on the right footing to set the stage for a successful year ahead. You will be in a position to set intentional goals and start building habits that will lead to the achievement  of your new goals.

 

For His Glory,

Lillian Chebosi

 

Volume 13, Issue 01: A Good Start

Compliments of the new year!

As we endeavor to double down on what worked well last year, we can't help but be fixated on the areas where we struggled to perform and deliver on. As such, you may be tempted to start by going all out on your problem areas. But I am afraid that is not the way to go. That route is likely to get you burnt out faster than you can imagine.

Starting by drafting simple improvements that you can make immediately is the way to go, taking simple steps in the immediate term and progressively increasing them as you go. What you want to do at the start is build consistency and discipline, as well as celebrate every milestone you hit to encourage you to keep going.

Give yourself a chance at making it this year. You mostly likely did well in some areas. Don't let fixating on the areas you did poorly on get you off on a shaky start. I believe starting the year with immediate wins is the way to go. As such, I recommend first doubling down on what worked well and taking baby steps on improving what did not work so well.

This is not to say that you are not going to go all in to succeed where you failed last year. It is about ensuring you get a footing in the game, rather than risk not having any chance at succeeding at all. Once you master the art of showing up, then you can make progressive improvements.

James Clear put it across precisely when he wrote, "Forget about peak performance. Would your results improve if you simply focused on being reliable in the normal moments? Show up when it's easy to skip. Do the fundamentals and do them well. And so on. Before you make it complicated, remember there are always simple improvements waiting to be made."

 

For His Glory,

Lillian Chebosi