Sunset over Sydney city

Set goals not resolutions this New Year

Sunset over Sydney city
Sunset over the city

We’re re-sharing this from last year as it still sets a great tone for the New Year and our approach to how this year will work.

As we enter a new year many people begin to make resolutions. “I want to be thinner”, “I want to work less” “I’ll spend more time with my family”. The resolutions can be empty and be easily forgotten. That’s why at Laing we like the idea of setting goals, not resolutions. Goals are something that you can make tangible. Give them a deadline. Set different goals for different time frames- right now, 1 year and 10 years. Tangible things are less likely to be forgotten as they’re less open. Less wishy washy. It teaches you to define what you mean and that in turn will make it easier to stick to. It also drives a sense of purpose into your life. Gives you a clear direction for where you want your life to go.


We’d like to share a technique we’ve picked up along the way with you. It’s a structure which will help you think through your goals:


2018 life plan

 There are 13 areas of focus and for each one we get you to look at 3 things:

  • What will this look like in a decade?
  • What will this look like in a year?
  • What will I do this month to get there?


The areas of focus are:

  • Relationships
  • Career
  • Finances
  • Creativity
  • Family
  • Home
  • Health
  • Holidays
  • Learning
  • Emotional and spiritual
  • Contribution
  • Fun
  • Friendships

Answer each of the questions above under each of the headings and you’ll have a clear, well-rounded view of where you want your life to go. What you want to achieve and how you’re going to do it.


What’s your purpose?

Sometimes in life it can feel like we’re treading water. Going through the motions without really getting somewhere. Naomi Simpson (Red Balloon founder) has a great book about developing purpose. In it she talks about developing your personal purpose. What’s the fundamental purpose that drives you in life? It should never be linked to an emotion or feeling as in life we need all emotions to live. We need to be happy and sad so a purpose can’t be “I want to be happy in life”. You’re doomed to fail straight away as life doesn’t work like that, there’ll always be times of sadness. And sometimes you need the sad times to appreciate the happy ones. Your purpose is the thing you’re aiming to achieve.

You might consider your purpose against all of the sectors or your life listed above. Then look for a common thread that’s something you strive to do. Something you get enjoyment out of that incorporates all of them. I.e. A purpose to be a great mum and bring up a great kid restricts you to only one part of your life. However, the purpose to create connections that help others achieve their goals can be attached to all areas of your life.

We hope that this inspires you as it has us. Happy New Year everyone!