So here we are in July. Where did the first half of the year go? It only seems a couple of weeks ago that I was drinking festive egg-nog, wearing my Christmas sweater and humming 'Sleigh Ride' too loudly in line at the supermarket.
It's kinda scary to think that there's just six months of 2005 left to run, and we've already had the longest day of the year which means that the nights are starting to draw in (I'm not trying to get you down, honest!). So how's the first half of the year gone for you? Was it what you expected?
Most importantly, what do you want the next six months to be about? To help you get clear on the rest of your year, here's what I want you to do:
Take a moment to think about the last six months - January to June. Think about everything you've done, the opportunities that came along, the tough times and the fun times, and think about where you are now having gone through the last six months. Give the first half of 2005 a rating from 1 to 10 - it could be a big-grin scale, a temperature scale or a fulfilment scale. How would you rate your 2005 so far?
Now go forward in time six months, and imagine yourself on a crisp December morning. You've put effort into moving things forward and it's worked - things have progressed in some important ways and you're seeing results and reaping the rewards. Using the same scale as before, what rating do you want to give to July to December? What rating represents how you want to feel about the next six months?
Imagine that it's still that December morning. You wake up, your eyes flicker open and things are different. Things have moved on, you have more of something and things have changed for the better. What one thing would make the biggest difference to you? What do you want things to look like or feel like on that December morning? Be as specific as you can be (close your eyes if it helps) and write down what comes out for you. Maybe it's building your confidence or boosting your self-esteem, maybe it's finding a new partner or improving your relationship, or maybe it's finding work you can love or feeling more fulfilled in the work you already do. Whatever it is for you, have fun thinking about what will be different when you have it.
Don't stop there - create another two things that would be amazing to have, do or be on that same December morning. What's bugging you right now that you'd like to change? What would make a huge or powerful difference to you? Again, be as specific as you can be about what you want to have, do or be on that December morning and write down your ideas.
You've just created three goals that you can achieve within the next six months. Keep them somewhere close to you and be sure to pay positive attention to those things as often as you can. Feel good about them and imagine yourself there with all three in place - pretty darn good, right?!
But it doesn't stop there. Each and every week from now until that December morning, dive back into your goals and feel what it would be like to have them, then ask yourself 'What's one thing I can do this week that will move me forwards?'. Each week, think of what decision you can make or what action you can take that will be one step forwards, no matter how big or small.
Simply by paying positive attention to what you want all kinds of things can just fall into place, but there's nothing like quite doing something about what you want! Be excited about the rest of the year because it truly can be extraordinary - you just have to make it extraordinary and allow it to be extraordinary. Yep, we're half way through 2005 already - but the best can still be to come.
Steve Errey is one of the UK's most successful coaches and specializes in personal growth for thirtysomethings - helping them with their careers, relationships and confidence and to get more fun, fulfilment and freedom.