Transform Your Business with New Year’s ReVolutions
While the origin of New Year’s resolutions goes back as far as 153 BC, in modern-day times, they usually evoke feelings of guilt. Most verbs associated with resolutions are restrictive, including to quit, stop, lose, reduce, or eliminate. The implication is that you need to improve, fix, or repair something broken or not complete.
By its very nature, people see New Year’s resolutions as a difficult exercise at best, requiring discipline, determination, and willpower … which are not exactly energizing words. As a result, most people “make” their resolutions on January 1, and usually begin to “break” them by February 1 as their commitment fades and enthusiasm for attainment wanes. Case in point: the extreme increase in traffic at a health club at the beginning of the year, which quickly subsides as the weeks and months progress.
Consider creating New Year’s reVolutions; “transformational actions that will lead to breakthrough results.” New Year’s reVolutions can energize and invigorate by the thought of “what’s possible.” By definition which one of the below would inspire you to get out of bed on January 1?
A resolution – a solution, accommodation or settling of a problem
A reVolution – a drastic and far-reaching change in ways of thinking and behaving
New Year’s reVolutions are personal and broader in scope than traditional resolutions. The framing of your reVolutions requires stepping back and deciding “what do you want to be” as opposed to “what do you need to do.” If someone were to introduce you to a large crowd recognizing you for your accomplishments, what would you want your bio to say? Are you on track to be that person? If not, what actionable steps can you take today that will help you get there tomorrow?
To help increase the chances of keeping inspired (vs. disciplined) with your New Year’s reVolutions, follow the 10 tips below …
- Goals are dreams with a deadline – Dreams are all about “wants and desires” with no commitment, whereas goals are “concrete and defined” with commitment. Where do you ultimately want to be and what do you want to do? Imagine limitless opportunities and be willing to take a chance to lay yourself on the line to achieve them. Write down three actionable goals you can visualize and WILL achieve by the end of the year. Keep them in front of you at all times so that your daily actions will lead you to the attainment of these goals.
- Positive attitude plus positive actions equals positive results – While having a positive mental attitude is a good start, it is the positive actions that follow that will lead to success (vs. hoping, wanting, and waiting for them to happen). Make a plan on how you will achieve each goal with mini-plans, mini-goals, and corresponding dates for each.
- Follow your passion – Commit to doing more of what you enjoy doing that invigorates, provides pleasure and satisfaction and less of what you do not enjoy that leads to procrastination and stress (delegate, hire out, etc.). Your chores are other people’s challenges.
- Soar with Your Strengths – Spend more time on those projects, tasks or activities that accentuate your talents and natural gifts and less time on the improvement of your weaknesses or shortcomings (delegate to others). By focusing on your strengths – what you are naturally good at – you will have a higher self-esteem, be more professionally fulfilled and you will ultimately be far more successful.
- Be the organized executive – Being overwhelmed with clutter on your desk and in your office can make you feel busier than you are. Start the year fresh by doing a total catharsis or cleansing. Go through every piece of paper in every file to trash it, box it (future needs), or re-file it (near-term needs). Your files will be reduced by 66 percent to 75 percent. You will start the year with a refreshed attitude. In addition, begin or end each day with 20 minutes worth of organizing, even if it means hiding piles until you can get to them.
- Re-analyze your “to-do list.” Does your “to-do list” sometimes look more like an annual plan? Are you working 10, 12, and 14-hour days and still feel like you never get it all done? Go back through your “to-do list” and prioritize it to “do it,” “delegate it” or “scratch it.” Prioritize your “to-do list” so that you can do more of what brings you personal, professional, and monetary rewards and less of what “steals your time.” Make sure you add in your “want to-do list” items, as opposed to only those tasks that others ask you to do.
- Compartmentalize your priorities – Once you have decided on your priorities for the day, week, month, and year, focus on the tasks at hand … setting up firewalls the keep any distractions from diluting your focus. While we have two arms, two eyes, and two ears, we only have one brain, so it is extremely difficult to concentrate on two or more projects and do them well at the very same time.
- Change the way you see everything – By reprogramming your brain to see opportunities vs. obstacles, challenges vs. chores, and celebrate what you’ve accomplished vs. feeling bad about what you have not, you will increase your energy, improve your attitude, and raise your level of professional satisfaction.
- Surround yourself with positive people – Good attitudes are contagious, elevating organizations to heights previously thought unreachable, but bad attitudes are more contagious, draining energy, accelerating discontent, and destroying morale. Choose to spend your precious time with people who will support you, encourage you, and celebrate your success.
- Reinvent Yourself – Even legacy performers realize that change is cathartic, energizing, and can be very good for a career. It is easy to become stale and accept the way things are if we don’t shake it up every once and a while, even in our dress and our surroundings.
With the ever-increasing number of new technologies – all designed to save us time, and make us more efficient and more effective – the reality is that they can be pulls and distractions as well – taking us off tasks to what is truly important. Do not become a slave to technology, but instead use technology as a tool to help you achieve your goals.
Finally, we all have a goal to “get it all done,” when in reality we have to accept that we will never “get it all done.” There is no way to accomplish all that we want to do plus all that is asked of us by our work, family, friends, and organizations. The reality is wherever we spend our precious resources – time, money, and energy – is where we will get the greatest results. Decide first on what results you want to accomplish this year, and spend your time, energy, and focus to achieve your New Year’s reVolutions.
About the Author:
Michael Guld is an author, speaker, entrepreneur, and radio commentator whose business development expertise lies in increasing sales performance, marketing exposure, employee productivity, and creating a world-class service experience. He is the president of System 21 and The Guld Resource Group and can be reached at (804) 356-7006 or firstname.lastname@example.org.