Radiate This New Year

Content originally published for The Merit Club

Throughout our lives we discover that some people are radiators and some are drains. There are people who look at life with optimism, emanating positivity and enthusiasm, others who see a glass half empty and vent negativity. We want to go into 2019 as radiators.

Photo by  Ethan Hoover  on  Unsplash

But in order to emit this happiness and warmth, first we must produce it from within us. Like a fire, we need fuel to keep it going and for some of us we may need to build a protective bubble around us to maintain it. And so we ask, how do we build a framework of positivity? How do we establish a groundwork that will support us and stay strong?

As a nation, 2018 has come to an end with uncertainty. If the vote of “no confidence” is any signal to go by, our sense of positivity, surety and indeed confidence in the present and most certainly the future is under question. We can’t predict what will happen in 2019, for the UK and for ourselves. With unforeseen obstacles and challenges that are sprung upon us, we can’t always guarantee our happiness. Often, this can make it difficult to live in the present moment, let alone actually enjoy it. However, we believe there are structures we can put it in place that allow us to generate more positivity in the face of this, enabling us to hold onto a sense of optimism rather than letting it drain away.  


Where finance is concerned, it is important to have a clear aim in mind for the year ahead. As I learnt from the lovely Tracey Livingston in November at a talk on setting clear goals and intentions with The Merit Club, if you’re freelance it is worthwhile setting yourself an exact figure that you’re hoping to make. Be ambitious. And work out how much you will ideally need to make per quarter, or per month (depending on what works best for you) to realistically achieve your aim. Alternatively, if you’re working for a company, set your sights on the promotion that you’ve wanted. List out as many reasons as you can why you already deserve it - not for anyone else, but for yourself - and add extra ways you will prove your worth this year. Let your list give you confidence. It’ll radiate from you. If you feel your hard-work is not being appreciated, you can mentally refer to your list as and when you need an extra boost to bolster you and fight your corner. This year, don’t be undervalued.


Following on from the above, work out where you would like to be this time next year with your career. Will this be a promotion? Or will you be doing something completely different? Will you choose to leave your current job altogether? You might transfer to another company… you might have a change of heart and study something new… Or, you might choose to go it alone and set up your own business, like many of the Merit Club members. If you’re in doubt, we say - go for it!! And if you do, get in touch - we’d love to talk to you about it and see how we, or other members in our community, can help you. The New Year is the perfect time to analyse your current position and assess how it is serving you. We dedicate so much of our time to performing and achieving, and for many of us this is for the gain of others. Take a look and see what you are gaining in return. Do you have satisfaction? Are you still motivated? Do you have ambitions? Work out what mechanisms you need to inflate your happiness in the work place and action them this New Year.


Enough with gruelling regimes, diets and work-outs that bring us stress and unhappiness. This year, make a plan that will bring you happiness instead. Try to discard all the negative words associated with our health from your vocabulary - no more “fat”, “ill”, “stressed”, “tired”, “ugly”, “dieting”, “cutting back”, “cutting out”. Don’t bring them into your headspace. Don’t allow them any room to manifest. Instead, think about how you can feel invigorated, energised, strong, empowered, confident, nourished. Do at least one thing each day that makes you feel good. Something you can pass on and exalt in to someone else.


Take a look back at 2018 and think, who made you happy? Who brought something positive into your life? Who did something for you and who would you happily do something for in return? Reach out to them this January and make sure they are a part of your life. In turn, acknowledge the people who drained you in some way. If you can’t escape them altogether (maybe they are in your workplace or family), work out ways in which you can build a protective shield around yourself when you have to deal with them. Find mechanisms you can use to stay neutral in their presence, so that their negativity bounces back off from you, rather than seeping into you. Maybe you’ll head straight to a gym class after seeing them to cleanse yourself of any toxicity, or go for a bracing walk in your lunch break, or call a friend for a gossip and a laugh. Whichever way you choose, don’t allow them to break down your protective barrier.

Enough with the New Year New Me mantras. Don’t feel you have to change. The 1st of January is just a day like any other. If we put too much pressure on ourselves and set unrealistic New Year goals and targets, we make ourselves vulnerable to more guilt and anxiety. If you do see New Years as a time to reflect, then at least set New Years Resolutions You Can Actually Keep.

For 2019, however, I believe that our intentions, ambitions and happiness are already burning within us. We simply need to place ourselves into the situations and environments that allow this happiness to manifest itself. We need confidence that allows this positivity to radiate out from us. So for this New Year, all I ask is that you believe in yourself and believe in the power of this positivity.