A couple of years ago, three of my close friends and I were sitting on our fold out camp chairs enjoying a few drinks and chatting about the year gone past. It was New Year’s Eve and we were camping a few hours north of Sydney. As the final hours of the year began to linger I had a lightbulb moment, why not run a four-way goal setting conversation with my friends to each set a goal for the new year.
I facilitated and participated in setting one achievable and inspiring goal for the year ahead. All of my friends had different goal areas that they wanted to work on; Lauren wanted to open a small business, Ben wanted to apply for a job with the NSW Firefighters, Larissa a musician wanted to write and record new music and, I wanted to focus on health and exercise.
I used a life coaching method called ‘Solution-Focused Brief Therapy’ and worked through a scaffold for conversation that was simple and easy for my friends to understand. I gently challenged them when I believed richer information could be elicited and I asked the best possible questions to ensure I got the best possible answers. I made sure that each of our goals were not just specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time bound but also felt inspiring.
I asked questions like; What do you need to achieve? What is happening in this area right now? What could you do to change this? How and when will you do this? What’s in your way? How will you sustain success? And how will you celebrate your wins?
Once these questions were throughly explored we put our goals in writing. We used the following exercise to cement our goals then read them out to one another to ensure we were held accountable.
The exercise on cementing our goals is done by writing out the following:
Set a realistic time frame – By: The 1st of July this year
What will you do specifically? – I will: Establish the groundwork required to start my own business including buying the domain and business names, create all social media channels and contact at least three suppliers to begin the product design phase.
Make it inspiring to your best possible self- So that: I use my strengths and challenge myself to create something I am truly proud of, so that I follow my dreams and create the life I imagine.
As 2016 drew to a close I found my three friends and I together again enjoying a drink and the view of Manly beach as the sun set in the sky. I had a a memory of the exercise we did a few years earlier and a big grin began to fill my face.
We had all absolutely smashed the goals we set. Lauren launched her small business and is now selling a collection of unique home decor pieces online. Ben applied for the NSW Firefighters, which is a long and difficult process. He reached the final rounds but was not successful on his first application, however he is keen to apply again in the future. Larissa wrote and recorded a range of music including a five track EP and a number of electronic collaborations. I reached my six month goal related to dietary adjustments and exercise. I used this goal as a building block and have been raising the bar ever since.
Coaching conversations are a fantastic way to explore your new year’s resolutions and set achievable and inspiring goals.
I am offering a special for telephone coaching in the month of January 2017 at a reduced rate of $80 AUD a session. Sessions run for approximately 55 minutes and can be scheduled most afternoons and evenings.
If you are interested in having a coaching conversation via Skype or face2face please get in touch via email Jakob@themindfulcoach.com.au
Jakob also teaches mediation and is trained in ACT, a mindfulness based cognitive form of psychotherapy. To read more click here