Exciting times precedes the holidays: trips to plan, presents to buy, cookies to bake, planes to board, family and friends to visit. This festive momentum abruptly stops in January when we return to Bangkok, and life returns to normal. Perhaps we have just spent two weeks spending more money than we wanted to and indulging in more wine, cheese and sweets than anticipated. And a blank year – a blank DECADE is staring us in the face – what to do?


Article written by Erin LARSEN
Mental Health Therapist


This is the exact right time to do some honest checking in – the blessed calm after the storm.
Where are you at? Without judgement, or worry, or fear, or but-ting yourself out of it – where would you like to be in two months from now? In two years from now? What would you like to create in this new decade?

We are here to constantly evolve our desires.


If that sounds intense, it should – meaningful change into achieving more of your desires in this new decade will need to feel like a radical challenge to defeat the distracting, chaotic, powerful voices in your mind that can sabotage even the smallest movements. So what would you like to create more of in your life? Less anxiety, more connection, money, friendships, passions, being a more present parent /partner, learning a new language, changing professions?

Then prepare yourself to launch an offensive against your old beliefs.


I was recently reading an article about the strategies that generals in World War II used when preparing and planning for battle. Their guiding principles were:

– Objective and simplicity
– Mass
– Surprise
– Security
– Economy of force
– Offensive
– Maneuver
– Unity of command

I would use this same approach to your goals for 2020 and beyond. What would you like to have more of in your life?


The purpose of objective is to direct every action you take toward a clearly defined, decisive, and attainable objective. Objectives can change over-time, but make sure they are realistic. Too audacious of a goal will just paralyze – so instead of ‘creating world peace’, what about ‘finding work that inspires me’, or ‘traveling to a new continent’. Also, make the objective simple and clear.


The purpose of mass is to concentrate the effects of your power at the most advantageous place and time to achieve desired results. Do not always fret about needing to spend 24/7 focused on this new goal. If you have two hours a week, or 4 hours a month that you can devote to it – then during that time, make sure you are at full mass capacity with focus on your objective.


Many times we are afraid of challenging ourselves to new adventures or new roles for fear of surprising our loved ones. What will they say? What if we fail? It’s good to surprise people! Yes, you are allowed to change and grow and advance out of old roles that are no longer inspiring you.


As you are trying out new adventures, challenges, and next steps for yourself, security is key. In battle, information leaks could result in the operation being delayed, revised, or even cancelled. Talking too much about things to friends and family might derail the steps that only you can find to make this happen. Keep your ideas safe and secure.


The purpose of economy of force is to allocate minimum essential power to secondary efforts. Meaning, if you have other necessary areas of your life that are taking too much energy and time, with little return, is there a way to be more efficient? For example, instead of taking time out of everyday to plan dinner, could you take 10 minutes on Sunday and write down your dinner plan for the next week?


In war terms, the purpose of an offensive action is to seize, retain, and exploit the initiative. Commanders rarely want to be in the defensive position. As you go about creating this change in your life, do not defend your actions. Keep an offensive spirit in order to make them happen!


As you are attacking this new year and new decade, remember, it will not always go as initially planned. You will need to develop good maneuvering skills to be flexible and not let unforeseen set-backs derail you.


The purpose of unity of command is to insure unity of effort under one responsible commander. For the purpose of your goals, YOU are the Commander. Of all things. Do not give your power away to anyone else in order for your desires to evolve!

In attacking the change that you would like to create, you might use all of these strategies in one day or have a month of mainly focusing on the ‘maneuver’ or the ‘mass’. By using these tools to innovate in all areas of your life, you will truly unleash your inner warrior into 2020. We are with you and cheering you on to victory.

Erin Larsen is from the US and received her graduate degree from New York University in 2007 and completed her post-graduate studies at the William Alanson White Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Psychoanalysis in New York City in 2012.
She began private practice in New York City and has continued her work here in Bangkok.

Read more about Erin here.

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