I've had an unreal year, the best of my life. I've had some highs and lows, but this has been a year of lessons and for that I am grateful. The clock is ticking fast into 2018, and, if your New Year resolution is to become more Productive, efficient, or focused, then I've got some advice to make it happen.

Tips for a better 2018

1. Plan your year in advance

Plan your calendar and stick to it for the 12 months ahead. This gives you room to manage your your time, prioritize what matters, and cancel what doesn't. This doesn't mean that everything on your calendar needs to be locked-in, but it helps you be fully aware of where you're going to be so that you can maximize your time.

Planning your calendar also helps to ensure your day-to-day efficiency. The best way to achieve this is by setting a time to do a full calendar review -- keeping in mind your weekly, monthly, and yearly goals and objectives.

2. Set clear goals that you can achieve

Setting clear goals that you can achieve helps you to be your best self and execute jobs effectively. The best way to achieve this is by adhering to your deadlines in terms of when you want certain things to be completed. The point of all this is to push you further by setting the highest standards for you to meet.

Further tips

3. Learn the art of accountability

There's no point in creating lofty goals that end up not being achieved. You need to master the art of accountability, and one way to do that is to get other people involved.

Let them know your plans, along with when and how you want to execute them.

4. Learn to be teach-able

Be the person who has the beginner's mindset. This involves seeing yourself as an apprentice instead of an expert, having a humble disposition, seeing things from the perspective of others, and being open to new ideas. Constant learning and exposure helps you to stand out from others.

5. Be grateful for every step

There is a Chinese proverb that says, "Those who drink the water must remember those who dug the well." This helps me to be grateful for every accomplishment and every milestone I reach, because this happens as a result of the effort of others. We all need to understand that the changes we want to make in our lives come only in the present.

What we do now controls who we become and where we are in the future. So, make the most of the New Year by planning, setting goals you can achieve, and learning to be accountable for your actions.

Have a wonderful 2018!