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How to Set Yourself up for Success in 2020.

Updated: Feb 13, 2020

2019 was a challenging year for a lot of people. Lot's of unexpected changes and a fair few curve balls thrown in for good measure.

  • How did you handle the challenges this year?

  • How many hurdles did you clear?

  • What did you learn about yourself this year?

Whether you set new years resolutions or not, one of the keys to continuous personal improvement is to stop and take some time to reflect. Often, when we get caught up in the momentum, especially when we are in survival mode,however creating time and space to stop and think is incredibly important.

It can be easy (and a typical human response) to focus on the negatives. When you sit and review make sure that you focus on the positives. Even within the challenges there would have been positive moments, positive people, positive lessons learned. 365 days and there would have been something good in all of them, make sure that they do not get overlooked.

I use this time of year as an opportunity to pause and reflect, however I use the summer to really stop and think. Every July I take the opportunity to look back on the previous 12 months. I show gratitude for having been given another 12 months of life and I ask myself some tough questions to really reflect on whether I am living the life I want to live.

Once I have the honest answers to these questions. (honest being the key factor here) I look at what I want to continue and have more of, and what I want less of, or to remove entirely.

This can lead to some difficult decisions however ultimately it leads to the life I choose and my own happiness and fulfilment.

Whether it is the beginning of the year or a date of your choosing:

Take some time to reflect.

Take some time to review.

Take some time to consider what you would like to keep and build on, and what you would like to challenge yourself to change over the next 12 months.

Before you cross the line into 2020

I see a lot of people make the same mistakes when trying to make changes in their lives.

These are often things people talk about when they first come to work with me, the reasons why they have failed over and over and not moved on to be the person who they want to be.

All of these can be an incredibly frustrating situation to be in.

Responsibility gets placed on other people, on situations, on timing or on anything else other than looking a little closer to home.

Yes, external factors can make a huge difference, but the accountability and responsibility must start with you – then, and only then, you look elsewhere!

This is what I hear a lot of. Does this sound like you?

If at first you don’t succeed, do the same thing, the same way and fail again!

As we get to the end of the year people will inevitably thinking about next year, what they want to achieve, what they want to do, who they want to become.

Many people will be rushing ahead without stopping to think about this year.

What did they set out to achieve 12 months ago? What were they all enthusiastic about, excited to get going on? How did they imagine 2019 to be?

Did it happen?

If yes - How?

If not – Why?

What will you do more of because it worked well?

What will you do less of because it didn’t get you the result or impact or outcome that you wanted?

If you don’t take time to sit and reflect on this year you will once again go leaping enthusiastically into next year and repeat the same behaviours and habits.

Even if 2018 was a year of success then spend some time reflecting on why so you can make it happen again in 2019!

It’s all balls!

Life throws everyone curve balls. How we handle them is what sets us apart.

Sometimes life throws us a ball shaped like no other ball we have ever seen before and so we must get help from others to help us handle it, so it doesn’t floor us.

Did 2019 throw you some new balls?

What have you learnt about yourself?

What positives can you pull out of the experience that you can take in to the next 12 months?

Did you learn that you are more resilient than you thought?

Did you learn that it is okay to ask for help and seek support?

Did you learn more about the internal resources that you already had that you can apply to other situations?

What did it tell you about the people around you? Did they show up and step in when you needed or asked?

If 2019 threw you a ball that floored you, what would you do differently next time? What do you know now that can help you stay on your feet if it happens again?

Life throws the balls – You ultimately have the decision on whether you learn how to play or you sit on the bench.

Failing by choice – When the status Quo becomes too comfortable.

Confession time – put your hands up if staying the same was easier than trying to change.

Be honest!

You started off with great intentions, lots of energy, you could see the positives of making all the changes you were setting out to make but as time went by it was just a lot easier to slip into the behaviour and habits you know.

Life got difficult, (as it often does) and so it was a great ‘excuse’ to just return to what you know and what is comfortable and put the goals on hold ‘for a bit’ until things settle down.

You have to WANT to make the changes, you have to want to put in the energy and effort into it.

Start small, embed the changes so they no longer feel different and become the ‘new normal’.

Small daily consistent effort is a lot easier to continue regardless of what is going on around you.

5 things to ask yourself when setting goals for 2020

1. Who are you setting the goal for and why are you setting it?

2.What are you prepared to give up and take up to make it happen?

3. Are they in alignment with who you are, and what is important to you? (values/needs/purpose)

4. What old behaviours and habits do you need to leave behind to make these happen?

5. What internal resources do you have, what external resources will you need to support you?

Stop, think, act and review. Whether it is for new year or for another date in the year that has more meaning for you make sure that you take the time to pause and reflect before moving ahead.


If you are determined to make 2020 a success and know that you need support to get you there then lets have a chat and see how Phoenix can best support you to become who YOU want to be and live the life YOU choose.

Whether you are looking for Individual One2One coaching, friendly and supportive groups or products to support you Phoenix Coaching offers something for everyone, wherever you are in the world!

(or at least we like to think so!)

Blog first written in 2018 for 2019.

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