By John Carroll
Goals, Change, Results
February 8th marks the beginning of the Chinese New Year for 2016. Chinese New Year 2016 is the year of the (Red Fire) Monkey, symbolizing competition, challenge and rapid change. An appropriate primer for this article.
The start of any new year always brings with it a lot of promise, energy and excitement. There are new calendar year business and prosperity plans, New Year’s resolutions, and a high level of enthusiasm and anticipation about the prospects for the future. Let’s be honest, we all start the year with great intentions, enthusiasm, BIG dreams and goals.
So, why do those grandiose plans seem to get derailed so early in the year?
Most of the month of January is consumed with post-holiday planning, kick-off meetings and launch activities, the roll out of new products, programs, staffing and compensation plans, etc. Generally, this initial wave of energy and excitement about the New Year’s outlook does not begin to dissipate until around the middle of February. Then those little voices in your head grow louder and start asking those tough questions.
What is really different today from last year? And … are you fully prepared for what lies ahead (the next wave)?
For the first 4-6 weeks or so of the year we’ve been swept up by a renewed energy, sense of purpose and excitement about the future. However, somewhere along the way things will become more difficult as “stuff” gets added to the pile, unexpected challenges arise, and our focus and energy levels decline. As a result, reaching those lofty goals can get pushed farther and farther out until they become a distance memory (and missed opportunity).
Don’t let this happen to you in 2016!
Recognize that those needed changes will not take place until you make the commitment and put forth the effort required to make them happen. This is true for personal and professional goals alike. Whether it is an exercise and weight loss goal, a business expansion and revenue growth goal, or something else.
Much like a surfer, you need to be thinking about and preparing for that next wave, so you can enjoy the ride when it comes. Here are my top five suggestions to help you stay focused, keep the energy level high, and be fully prepared to reach your goals and to capitalize on whatever comes next:
- Slow your roll. Don’t be in a hurry to fill up the “To Do” list with a lot of new projects and get caught up in the ‘Busy Being Busy” activity trap. Keep the focus on your top priorities.
- Build from within. Make this the year to work on yourself first, and challenge yourself to be great. This will enable you to build a stronger foundation for the future.
- Enlarge your vision. Take a global approach. Don’t sell yourself, your business or your life short by thinking too small. View your future outlook through a wide-angle lens.
- Work on balance. For your health and well-being, invest the proportional amount of time, resources and energy to all of the ‘Five F’ areas – Faith, Family, Finances, Fitness and Fun.
- Execute with precision. Accountability is the driving force for change, and the area where most people struggle. Keep Nike’s slogan in mind at all times and ‘Just Do It’.
Make 2016 your “Monkey” year. Your year for competition, challenge and rapid change. Stay committed to making those requisite changes to reach your goals, and then build upon the great results and momentum for future growth and prosperity.
Doing so will help you stay focused, keep your energy level high throughout the year, and be fully prepared to reach your goals, capitalize on the next wave and enjoy the ride.
John Carroll is a business and leadership strategist who works with business leaders to help them ‘achieve the results to move beyond their vision.’ He is a best-selling author, educator, blogger and speaker. Email John at firstname.lastname@example.org or learn more at http://www.trescoach.com/.
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