Get your head in the game. You’ve got a whole year ahead of you. Or hopefully, lots of years. So what are you going to do this year to make it a success?
First: be honest, how did last year go for you? Great, right? Every goal hit majestically, every obstacle tackled effortlessly, and each person you met helped get you there like surfing the mosh pit at a phish concert. (I’m hoping that last line gets me a little street cred.)
OK, so maybe it wasn’t quite that easy. What went wrong? What’s your fail-safe plan to not screw up this year? Because you’re not perfect. (If you are perfect, why are you reading my blog post?)
Here’s my 5 cents for how to do it differently:
Lose the Victim Act: Think of the last time something went wrong in your life, whose fault was it? Too often we look to the outside when the proverbial poo hits the fan, but I highly encourage you to look at things differently. We have a much more powerful outcome in our own lives than we often recognize. The victim act just isn’t that sexy, or useful for that matter. So take charge of your fate, or at least accept that when things go wrong it doesn’t mean you are wrong.
Do More of What’s Working: What were your big successes over the last year? Chances are they’re measurable and duplicatable (spellcheck says that’s not a word, but it is working for me so I’m going for it). For sales people: Create a list of your top clients, and think back to how you landed and closed those deals. For makers and managers, create a list of successful projects and identify the habits that made them work. Do that more, everyday.
Celebrate Your Failures: Do you smell that? I think I stepped in failure. Next to public speaking and spiders, fear of failure is one of the most crippling fears any human can carry. Failure is a necessary evil on the road to success. Recognize it, celebrate it, then wipe it from your shoe and learn from it. That, my friends, will help keep your sanity intact. Need more? There’s a book on the topic of failure by AccelaWork’s own Robby Slaughter.
Goals, They’re Not Just for January: You know those things we write out the first month of each year? Those nagging little goals that tell us we are doing great, or we suck at life? How often are you revisiting them? Do you have them broken down into a part of your daily behavior? Are you tweaking them to better serve you? If you answered “no” you should contact me, I have a great resource for this. In any case, it’s always a great time to set goals and also to review goals.
Shake it Off: Thank you T-Swift for your brilliance in 2014. (And Macklemore/Lewis/Dalton for saying what “Can’t Hold Us” in 2013. And so on). Things truly aren’t as bad as they seem, most of the time. We have this amazing gift called perspective which allows us to see the world anyway we choose, which makes celebrating failures a whole lot easier. Keep this in mind when you’re right on top of a catastrophe. It may be funny someday, or just a lesson. But it’s probably going to get better.
Those are my top tips for being a success in the year ahead. But remember: if all else fails, just do exactly what you did last year. Einstein couldn’t have been right about everything.