It is a new year, a time for new beginnings, new possibilities. Yet, most of us aren’t really creating something new. We are making resolutions, setting goals, trying to be better, do more or somehow overcome what we think we did wrong or did not do enough of in the past year. In other words, we are looking to the past to create the future. Nothing new! Frankly, nothing inspiring about it generally. I do find it is a set up for disappointment and unfulfilled expectations.

Stop with resolutions. Instead, try creating aspirations. One definition of aspiration is: a strong desire, longing, or aim; ambition: intellectual aspirations. a goal or objective that is strongly desired. I think of an aspiration is coming from the future, something big, something inspiring, something with new life. Aspirations are not created to fix anything. They come from a more emotional place.

There is an exercise to do that comes from Conversational Intelligence which I am trained in (by Judith Glaser) that I recommend. Here is the exercise:

I recommend getting yourself in a place where you are relaxed with the likelihood of few interruptions. Allow yourself to imagine, dream—what excites you, even if you think it is impossible. Note that when you go to figuring out how to do it, ruling it out, talking yourself out of it- you are accessing a different part of your brain and will shut down the process and what is possible. If that happens, notice it, let it go and imagine again. Write down a list- getting down 50 or more aspirations.

Then, put categories to your list- even things like travel, education, work, money. See which belong together. When you do this, you will cause your brain to go into more convergent thinking so don’t do it too soon. The key to this process is to give yourself permission to be Aspirational and allow any and all ideas to emerge.

As you organize the list you may discover new possibilities, new aspirations you never thought of before. Others may be familiar, and you haven’t been at work on them.

Next, after you put them in categories, step back. Look at your life. Where would it inspire you to put energy. Take that category and create some occasions to go to work on fulfilling those aspirations. You are going to work on them, and it is important that you remember this is an aspiration from what is possible, from creation and if you decide to do something else, it is perfectly fine. Don’t turn them into resolutions that you use to set yourself up for the potential of failing.

Let yourself imagine, aspire, inspire your life.

Yes, it is a happy NEW YEAR!