Kwento Kwentuhan

New Year, New You

Liza A Pierce of “A Maui Blog” | Photos courtesy Liza Pierce

By the time you are reading this article it will be three weeks into 2022. How is your New Year 2022 going so far? Did you make a resolution at the start of the year? How is that going for you?

The new year is a great time to think about self-improvement. It naturally is a good time to cast visions and set goals. If by any chance you already fell short of your resolution, do not give up. Step back up or maybe re-think about your strategy and tool for self-improvement. Does simply writing a resolution work for you or do you need to set goals to cast a vision? Or maybe to make things simple, all you have to do is have a “one word” to guide you to a better you.

What has been your dream of changing but never had the gumption to really follow through with … Try one or all of these methods to stay the course to success.
Photo: Liza Pierce

Let’s talk story about the various ways we have to help us achieve a better us in the new year. Pick one or do them all. The key is to do and not just to plan on doing. So here are the four ways:

1. New Year’s Resolution. This is a tradition where a person resolves to continue good practices, change an undesired trait or behavior, accomplish a personal goal or otherwise improve their life at the start of a new year. These days, New Year’s resolutions have a low success rate. Why? Because New Year’s resolutions seldom have actionable steps. They are created out of peer pressure based on an arbitrary date. When I was in elementary school in the Philippines, it was a yearly tradition in our school when we returned from our Christmas vacation, our teachers would ask us to write down our New Year’s Resolution. Did you do that in school too?

2. Set Goals. Instead of resolutions, many prefer to set goals for the year (and even 5 year and 10-year goals). They think that setting goals are more realistic, especially if you set SMART goals. SMART goals are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time bound. To do this, take some time to reflect on where you are and where you want to be. Writing down the specific goals and dividing them into manageable, actionable bite-sized pieces helps attain it. This is what we do at my office. At the company I work for, we are encouraged to set goals.

3. One Word for the Year. The process of choosing a word helps you focus on the goals and actions you want to work on for the next year. It also helps you determine your priorities like whether you will concentrate on family, personal growth, career etc. Carefully selecting a word of the year helps you to gain clarity about the things you would like to create in your life and the way in which you want to live. I started choosing one word in 2017 and have done it year after year since then. Here are some of the words I had: 2017 Listen, 2018 Courage, 2019 Transform, 2020 Align, 2021 Persist. In 2021 I published my first book Maui 2021 and Beyond and it was that one word persist which helped me persevere and not give up on writing the book when times were tough. Yes, one word can help achieve a dream if you stick by it.

A real vision board provides a daily incentive every time you wake up and see it.
Photo: Liza Pierce

4. Vision Boards. A vision board is a collage of images and affirmations representing your dreams in a visual way. The collage of beautiful photos, graphics, text and quotes are there to inspire you and to define what you want most. It then serves as a reminder to chase those dreams throughout the year. Many people use a poster board to create and visualize their goals, pasting photos they find from magazines. You can, however, also use a notebook, corkboard or even create a digital version. Vision Boards are fun to do with friends. At the end of the year, gather some friends, bring magazines, pupu and drinks and create vision boards together for the coming New Year.

Whatever way or tool you use to help you improve, do it. The important thing is we take advantage of the momentum of New Year to create a better version of you. The New You. Happy New Year!

Liza Pierce of A Maui Blog is an Interactive Media Strategist in Hawai‘i. She started blogging in 2006 and she loves talking story online and spreading Aloha around the world. She’s been living on Maui since 1994 and considers Maui her home. A wife, a mother, a friend…and so much more. She loves Jesus; Maui Sunsets Catcher; Crazy About Rainbows; End Alzheimer’s Advocate. Her life is full and exciting here on the island of Maui. Liza is currently the Interactive Media Strategist with Wailea Realty Corp.