And that was a wrap ladies. Another another year over, another chapter turned, and a whole new 365 days to make an impact! This means that now is the perfect time for setting new intentions for 2023 and the ‘word’ of the year.
Welcome back to my blog and Happy New Year! Are you ready to kick start the year? Some people find January a bit depressing, others find it daunting or overwhelming. But I find that it is the best time to reflect, recuperate and reset for the year ahead.
I used to feel like a slump this time of year. The Christmas
craziness buzz is long forgotten and the next holiday is so far away! On top of that, being in the UK, the days are shorter, darker, colder and mostly wet!
Therefore, I prefer to cosy up at home for some me time, reading, reflecting and setting my intentions and goals for the new year. I used to get really annoyed with myself for not being “productive” and “wasting” time. However, over the years, I’ve learned to accept January for what it is. Rather than seeing it as I’m wasting time, I changed my mindset to see it as the time to focus on me! Now, I see that as the time to prepare myself mentally, physically and emotionally for the new challenges and opportunities ahead.
STOP feeling guilty
If you are feeling guilty for not wanting to do much in January, then STOP! You’ve had a super busy year, hustling, juggling, learning new things, and kicking goals. You were an entrepreneur, career woman, wife, mum, daughter, and the list goes on. You’ve worked hard. You deserve a break!
So use this time to take a pause and give yourself permission to focus on yourself and for yourself. Because if not now, then when? If you want to kick back with a book, do it. If you want to run a bath or give yourself a facial, then do it. Do it without feeling guilty! And if you want to use this time to really think about your New Year goals and directions, then do it! You do you and do it with conviction!
My January is filled with all of the above!
And today we are setting new intentions for 2023 and word of the year. Because I know getting this right from the outset will shape the year I’m going to have. The right intentions will shape my goals, and the right goals will spark joy, passion and creativity.
So if you’re with me, then get yourself a cup of tea, light the fireplace (or some candles), cosy up and let’s get started.
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Reflecting on the year that was
Before we get into 2023 intentions, I like to spend time reflecting on my 2022. Write down my highlights and lowlights. My successes and not-so-successes. I also like to create a list of the lessons I’ve learnt, and what I would do differently. Then I decide what I’m going to take forward to the New Year with me. Draw a line in the sand and let go of the things that no longer serve me.
I like to give myself plenty of time and space to write them all. So I usually do this over a few days or a couple of weeks. It’s more important to do it properly than to rush through. I find journalling really therapeutic and grounding. If you’ve not discovered journaling yet, I suggest you give it a go. It will honestly change your life!
If you don’t know where to start, you can use these 3 reflection questions to trigger your thoughts:
- What goals did I achieve last year?
- What did I do well?
- Where can I improve (or what lessons did I learn)?
Feel free to add other questions, but I wouldn’t recommend more than 5 as you don’t want to overwhelm yourself.
Setting new intentions for 2023
Now that we’ve reflected on the previous year, it’s time to start setting new intentions for 2023. My 3-step process will enable you to set the intentions that are aligned with your intrinsic needs, which will ultimately shape the new year and the new you.
Step 1: Find a planner that suit your needs
There’s just something so satisfying about starting a brand-new planner with a whole new 365 pages to plan for! So step 1, get a new planner. You won’t regret it!
The secret to keeping up with your planner is to find one that serves you! Think about how much time you like to spend filling it in, every day or once a week. If you only have 5min each day to document your to-do list, then don’t go for a planner with pages of habit trackers, budgeting, daily gratitude, goals, to-do’s etc to fill in. You will just end up resenting it.
My bookshelf is full of neglected planners, so trust me on this one! It took a bit of experimenting but I’ve finally figured out what kind of planners serve me best. It’s a great idea to track everything in my life. But in reality, it was too demanding on my time. So it went into the too-hard basket.
The truth is, all I need to be productive is a just simple weekly planner, one page for my weekly priorities, and another page for notes. This beeeeeautiful high-end luxury Smythson Soho Planner is exactly what I need. It comes with gorgeous blue paper. BUT I don’t particularly want to spend loads on a planner. Maybe one day when my blog takes off! *aah-hum* haha…
So I went on the hunt and found this high-street premium alternative for a fraction of the price! It looks professional and feels classy and the paper is of premium quality. I’m all about being classy and elegant without breaking the bank! They also have this minimalist Moleskine Life Planner (here for the US) if you are after one with a few more things to track. It’s pretty sleek!
Step 2: Choose your ‘word’ for the year
If you’ve been here for a while, you would know that I don’t do new year’s resolutions. Instead, I choose a ‘word’ of the year to ground my intentions and goals for the year. I’ve been doing this for years now but have only started publishing it in recent years. Listing it here in case it inspires you to find the right word for your 2023.
Last year, my word was DISCIPLINE because I had an issue with procrastination and I wanted to work on it! I needed to be more disciplined with myself and consistently work on my goals. I didn’t want another year of feeling under-accomplished. One will only achieve greatness when they have the discipline to follow through and practise, and practise consistently!
It’s true. Last year, I enforced discipline into my blogging schedule and consistently published content. As a result, my blog went from no page views to 200+ daily pageviews in less than 12 months!! (P.S. Thank you for stopping by!)
Hence setting a word of the year to ground your goals really works! Especially when it comes to level-up and personal development goals.
This year I’m having two words, HEALTH and CONVICTION.
Health is self-explanatory. Conviction is to combat my confidence issue! I’ve been battling with low self-confidence for many many years. Instilling the art of elegance into my life and developing the characteristics of a classy Lady has significantly improved my confidence and self-esteem. But there is still work to be done. I want to be so confident that I speak (and write) with conviction, professionally and socially, every time. I want to embed faith in myself, feel confident from my bones and face the world with conviction!
Now, your turn… what is your word of the year?
Step 3: Identify the lessons you want to carry over to the new year
Don’t get me wrong, I am all about celebrating the wins, big or small. But even the biggest wins will have lessons learnt. It doesn’t mean we weren’t good enough, but it allows us to continue levelling up and not be complacent. So I always try to identify lessons.
Looking back is always 20-20 vision. So reviewing what I’ve done will allow me to assess what and how I would do differently. This is a really humbling exercise and a good habit to get into. Just like the principles of an elegant Ladylike transformation, reflect, refine and elevate.
I had many lessons from 2022 but these 4 are the most important lessons and had the most impact on my life and well-being. Therefore, I will carry them over to 2023.
- Being disciplined has really changed my life, but I’m not perfect. There are still areas where I need to instil more discipline. Such as exercising! Hence HEALTH.
- Staying present has given me the most joy this year. When I am present, I am not anxious. Therefore I am more focused and see things more objectively. So this is a lesson I definitely want to continue practising.
- Not multi-tasking, similar to staying present, I stopped multi-tasking and just focus on doing one thing at a time. This allowed me to be more present, naturally, less stressed, more focused and more productive.
- Being selective about the content I consume and only feed my mind with healthy inspiring content.
What lessons are you carrying over?
Happy setting new intentions for 2023 and word of the year
I hope you found this article useful and got some useful tips and inspiration on setting your intentions for 2023. Just to recap:
- Get a planner that works for you
- Prioritise an area you want to work on and set your word of the year accordingly
- Identify lessons you want to carry over to the new year
Remember, reflect, refine and elevate. And now you are ready to move on to set some goals and objectives for the New Year. Don’t forget to go back to last year’s goals and carry over the outstanding ones!
Lastly, it doesn’t matter if you are a word of the year or a new year’s resolution girl. What matters is that you continue to elevate yourself. May 2023 be filled with beautiful convictions, excellent health and tonnes of joy. Now let’s go kick some goals!
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