A new year is just around the corner and I can’t help but feel so invigorated and inspired. A new frontier of life lays before us: Let us seize what needs to be seized and conquer what needs to be conquered!
I’ve been reading Tina Santi Flaherty’s book, “What Jackie Taught Us” and I’ve always loved Jackie Kennedy, but after diving into this book some more, I am fully enamored by her. (Much like how most of the country was and still is already.) She was an incredible woman for very many reasons. Specifically, for how she conducted herself and for how she conquered her goals.
The last chapter I just finished talks about how Jackie managed her goals and time. She “actively pursued what made her happy and often avoided activities that didn’t appeal to her. If she felt she couldn’t make a difference, she wouldn’t get involved.” (Tina Santi Flaherty, “What Jackie Taught Us.”)
This made me think about how I make goals and plans, and how or why I usually fail at them. Sometimes, I make goals and let things that don’t matter and that don’t make me happy get in the way of accomplishing that goal. Sometimes, I invest time and interest in things that don’t need my time or interest. If It’s a poor investment of my time and energy, I shouldn’t do it. And like Jackie, I should spend my time and energy on things that really matter: The things and the people I love.
Not only did Jackie invest her time wisely, but she did it smartly. Terri explains, “This quality of knowing where she would most likely succeed or fail stayed with her throughout her life and is one of the major reasons that she achieved as much as she did.”
Jackie was fully aware of her flaws. She didn’t hide them or pretend that they weren’t there. She only committed to the area/goals that suited her interests and talents. Like her wardrobe, she only did what worked for her.
Keeping this in mind, as we approach the new year, we make the same goals every year, don’t we? But what flaws or unrealistic expectations keeps us from accomplishing our goals?
One of those flaws could be poor planning. Perhaps we didn’t reach that goal, because we didn’t come up with a proper road map.Per Antoine De Saint Exupery, “A goal without a plan is just a wish.” I am so guilty of this.
Or maybe the problem isn’t the lack of a road map, perhaps the problem is the route we chose to take on that road map. For example, if your goal is to lose x lbs still, and you haven’t lost them, maybe you are charting an unrealistic route for yourself. If you hate going to the gym, then going to the gym 2 hours and working out like a rock star isn’t your thing. Find a way to moderate your expectations to meet your reality.
Terri writes that Jackie Kennedy created her “own road map, because she knew where she wanted to go and how to get there.” And as she created it, she took into account her strengths and weaknesses.
When you make your road map, keep into account your weaknesses. If you have a car that needs gas every 300 miles, then obviously, you would plan accordingly on a road trip. You’d (a) take a different car, (b) take a plane, or (c) deal with it and stop for more gas. Therefore, don’t just plan on how you are going to get there, but plan on how you are going to deal with the detours called your weaknesses.
Another thing to account for is too many destinations. As Jackie herself stated that she gets “very enthusiastic over something at the beginning and then tires of it halfway through. I am trying to counteract this by not getting too enthusiastic over too many things at once.” Organize and Prioritize.
The past 15 years of my life can be defined as getting over enthusiastic about things that I would never be able to achieve or getting over enthusiastic about too many things. I had too many eggs in too many baskets. I still do this. Thank you Jackie, for bringing this to my attention.
So if you want to accomplish your New Year’s Resolution the Jackie way, do the following:
- Do what you love: If you love it, go for it.
- Be honest with yourself and chase only what you know you are capable of achieving. Know your limitations.
- Define your weaknesses. Take them into account when you make a plan.
- Develop your plan.
- CRUSH IT!
Your time and energy is a limited resource, so channel it the best way you can to accomplish all that you really want to accomplish in life.
Like Jackie, “To achieve what you want out of life, you have to know what you believe in. Know who you are and what you stand for!” – Tina Santi Flaherty