The Brainquil Blog

Wednesday, December 30th, 2015

Coffee and notebook2016 is almost here, and many are getting ready to write yet another New Year’s resolution for 2016. Problem is, depending on the number of years you’ve been a happy earth citizen, this number is probably only equal to the amount of resolutions that mostly didn’t happen.


According to Author David Allen, Author of Getting Things Done – the Art of stress free productivity program, resolutions and to do lists don’t work as they don’t accommodate for how our brains work.


This post is based on the revolutionary insights of Allen’s work, with which one can learn to write a resolution, which you can actually make it happen throughout 2016 .


  1. Before writing the Resolution Clear your Head.


Writing a resolution requires a significant amount of clarity and creativity. These two things require Space within our minds. All of the short-term information is stored on what Allen calls the Psychic Ram, which is like the computer Ram, is used to process and figure out stuff.


Unfortunately, the Psychic Ram is very limited. All those bills, shores and errands are creating too much fuss in the Psychic Ram, producing blockage, ambiguity and of course Stress.


Our Psychic Rams are usually filled Automatically by our minds. Thing is, we failed our minds one too many times, they just don’t trust us anymore. We often forget birthdays, important documents and events. Frustrated with us, our minds decided to take action, with all the things it knows we can’t be trusted with, and pour them into our psychic ram, so we don’t forget them. Sadly, as our psychic ram can hold up to only 3 simultaneous thoughts at once, we often fail to keep us with all of the stuff, thus, we are left overwhelmed and victim to the modern day epidemic of stress.


The Good news is, clearing your head is pretty simple. We have to tell our minds to ease up, and we will remember all that stuff when need be. Doing this requires putting all of this mundane, short-term stuff into a bucket that we TRUST, which we will get back to when needed. The keyword here is Trust, if you’re going to scribble down all that stuff into a notebook, you have to be certain that this notebook is accessible, and easy to find at any time. Other than that, your mind will just distrust you again, and start filling your Psychic ram with memos, and shampoos you need to buy.


Hint: By writing down ALL of the stuff having your attention in a trusted bucket (Notebook, App or even computer notes), your psychic ram empties up, and you no longer depend on it to retrieve this stuff.


  1. Write your resolutions in Desired outcomes and complete sentences format


There is a vast difference between an idea and it’s worldly application. Usually, unclear goals, add much ambiguity. Peter Drucker, the famous author once stated that we spend 70% of our time defining our work during our day-to-day operations. This doesn’t only take a large chunk of our time, it probably demotivate us and makes us attend to other irrelevant shores.


Writing your resolutions in complete sentences, in terms of what success looks like would save you both time and effort. This process will allow you to structure your thoughts more clearly and helps you detect if that really excites you.


For example, “lose weight” is an incomplete sentence, but, losing 10 kilos to fit the black dress or wearing my new suit, is both exciting and clear.


Hint: Always remember that resolutions should excite you. Be sure to scribble them down in complete full sentences and in terms of what success looks like?


  1. For every Resolution, create a Next physical Visible Action


In their Song, if today was your last day, the Canadian band, Nickleback sang, “The first step is the longest Stride”. This can’t be more true. If for each resolution, you just did one small action, you actually took the hardest step in rolling the ball. Next Actions should be written down in a visualized physical, visible action.


If we take the losing 10 kilos example:


Desired Outcome: Losing 10 Kilos to fit the new black Tuxedo

Next Action: Go to the gym next to my home and register. Or Call my trainer to ask about workout routines. Or Download a diet plan.


Remember, it’s always easier to move when you’re already in motion.


Hint: Writing the very Next physical, visible action is doable. You can take the 1st step in the 1000 mile journey only by executing this step. This is how you get things done. If you think about the desired outcome or the bigger picture only, you can be overwhelmed and lose excitement. Just put one foot in front of the other. Next action thinking will make things easy, doable, and realizable.


  1. Review your resolutions Regularly


Having those resolutions written somewhere that you can regularly access to review, will give you the needed perseverance and consistency to follow through with your goals. Be very rigorous with your reviews, schedule a sacred weekly review, to look at your desired outcomes and decide on the next physical/visible actions.


Most people either depend on their minds to remind them of the resolutions and only look at their goals once at the beginning of the year. They depend on their motivation to get things done. Unfortunately, motivation depletes very easily. Making realizing these goals, into an operational work, not depending on emotional capacity, will help you a lot in achieving your dreams.


Hint: In every weekly review, take the time to empty your psychic ram as mentioned above to clear your head from any mundane stuff to give you the needed space to rally your actions with your goals.


  1. Be Careful of Anxiety, Fear of Failure and Apathy


Procrastination is when you dwell on irrelevant stuff, like surfing Facebook rather than working on that very important proposal you need to write. Procrastination happens due to Anxiety, where you focus too much on the bigger outcome, you get overwhelmed, fear failure and tend to more easier tasks.


Also, not having clear outcomes can put you off track. Robin Sharma, the author of the monk who sold his Ferrari once said “You cannot hit a target you cannot see”. Being very clear about your targets through expressing them into full sentences of what success looks like, will take you a long way.


Apathy is one of the keys to procrastination. Apathy happens due to losing interest in the target. If that happens to you, renegotiate with yourself, do I really want this? If the answer is yes, then probably it’s not dumbed down enough, and probably you just need to decide on a doable, very next physical visible action.


These tips will help you a lot to make in making your 2016 New Years resolutions much more realizable and doable. So, go ahead with clearing your psychic ram and start writing down Your Dreams..


Click Here to know more about Getting Things Done...


and a Happy new year!

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Written by:
Ahmed Abza
Curious Brain