The new year is almost upon us, some of us are leaving 2017 with fond memories, happy with the year that has been. Others are relieved to see the year is over, perhaps trying to put behind them unhappy memories? Then there are some of us just super excited to embrace a new year and make it a successful and productive year to come!

Did you achieve your set goals in 2017? I didn’t achieve all of mine, but then again I achieved other things that were not originally in my plans at the beginning of the year. Admittedly I have some things that I wished I worked harder towards, I don’t really believe in regret, I chose to see it more as a ‘lesson’. I have learned that when I don’t push myself to achieve things important to me that I will be disappointed. Acknowledging where I have gone wrong, understanding why, and recognising what I can do differently is key to making next year a more productive one.

It is also important to reflect on all the great things I achieved too! To be grateful for all the wonderful things that occurred this past year, and be proud of the ways I helped others.

A year can feel like it goes way too fast, or it can feel like it dragged on forever, and depending on our view we can see it as a bad year, or a good year. In truth a year is both, we can’t write off a whole year as bad, there are always good days, precious moments amongst sad, or hard times, just as there are tough days amongst the happy times. Choosing to be mindful, and be grateful can really make us happier.

Do you have goals, or resolutions for 2018? I have spent some time thinking about what I want to achieve, but haven’t made a list as such, yet anyway. I have been thinking about what makes us more productive, what helps us achieve the goals we choose to set. Here is what I have come up with.

  • Positive mindset. Focusing on the positives and believing in ourselves always helps when it comes to working towards goals.
  • Gratitude. Being grateful for what we have helps us to see the positives and therefore makes us happier. The happier we are, the more productive we are.
  • Getting rest. We all know we don’t function at our best when we are tired, or when we don’t get enough sleep the night before. We become sluggish, feel more negative, and are less efficient. I know for me I am more emotionally fragile too. Getting rest and quality sleep is key to being more focused and more productive! Aim for at least 7 hours of sleep per night.
  • Eat. This might seem silly, but the truth is many people skip meals thinking if they take a lunch break they will get ‘less’ done. The truth is without eating our ability to concentrate is lowered and our productivity levels decrease.

  • Time Management. It is all too often we say that we don’t have time. It is true, we don’t have time to do everything! So we need to prioritise what really matters to us! We can not say “I didn’t have time to call you back,” when we actually had time to watch our favourite TV show. The truth is that the down time and enjoyment from watching the TV show we love was our priority at that time. The same goes for working on things we really want to achieve, if we are truly passionate about it then we need to make the time. It may mean missing a movie, or not getting our nails done that week etc. It is all about what matters most to us. Of course there are commitments we can not avoid, and we do need down time, but when we really want to find time to work on our goals, we can.
  • Exercise. Exercise may be your goal, but if it isn’t it is still an important one to include in your life. Getting out for a walk on your lunch break will help clear your mind and boost your productivity. It will also release those positive, feel good endorphins and make you happier.
  • Reflection. It is important to take the time to reflect on what is and what isn’t working for you. When you take the time to reflect, just sit still ,and think, then you can really listen to your heart and know what is important to you, and what you need to let go of.

  • Invest time in positive people. Surround yourself with people who respect you and believe in you. Let go of toxic relationships and people who are always doubting you. You do not need nay sayers in your life. Spend time with those who make you feel good about yourself, and those who are happy within themselves.
  • Be kind to yourself. Treat yourself with kindness, just as I mentioned above, you don’t need nay sayers in your life, so do not do that to yourself. If you tell yourself you can not do things then you won’t. Be positive and treat yourself as you would a friend that you wish to encourage. Believe in yourself and even if you stumble don’t be to hard on yourself. Allow yourself time to reflect, to heal and to rest along the way, but also push yourself and keep believing you are worthy of the garret things that are going to come your way this year!

Whatever your 2018 goals are, I wish you luck with them, and I wish you a safe and happy new year! Love, Mac xx