12/30/2013 02:27 pm ET Updated Mar 01, 2014

Resolutions? 10 Powerful Questions Before You Start

The new year is here, and like so many people, you're probably making resolutions and thinking about all the things in your life that you don't like. For example, maybe the 15 pounds you put on last year, or the career that is still unfulfilling and boring, or the relationship that is going nowhere. And like most people, you'll think of these negative things, vow to change them, maybe make small progress, but come late February you'll still be stuck. The reason: while thinking of all the things we don't want or like in our lives is good, it won't lead to lasting change. In the short term it might jump start your efforts, but the motivation usually wanes as there's nothing positive to work towards, only something negative to move away from.

Whenever my clients tell me about what they don't like or want in their lives, I prompt them to tell me what they do want in their lives. Whenever they tell me what's wrong, I ask them what's right. This goes back to positive thinking 101 and it can truly help you to make lasting changes in 2014.

The exercise below will help you to dig deep, get honest with yourself, and uncover what you truly want and where you really want to go in a positive way. It's the initial powerful step towards making changes in your life. Relax in a comfortable place, somewhere you feel safe, secure, and free to dream. Think about the questions for every area of your life: home, work, social, finances and sex/relationships. In each area, try to visualize your ideal future. Use all of your senses and get clear about what you want and see where your mind goes.

1. What excites you?

2. What are you passionate about?

3. Who do you admire and why?

4. Think about people in your life who excite you. What are they doing? Why do you find it exciting?

5. Who in your life do you find inspiring? What about this person inspires you?

6. What is missing from your life?

7. If you could be doing anything right now, what would you be doing?

8. If you could be working anywhere, where would you be working?

9. What would you do or have in your life if money were not an obstacle?

10. What would you do if you did not have to deal with fear, stress, uncertainty, risk or discomfort to get it?

For more tips on making powerful changes in your life and reaching your goals, check out my book BE FEARLESS: Change Your Life in 28 Days.