This time of year can prove very stressful as we try to manage end of year deadlines and plans for the new year, all while trying to balance our personal commitments and priorities. Here are a few tips to help you stay focused and help you move into the New Year with momentum.
Bring Personal Matters to the Forefront
In order to maximize your effectiveness as a leader who produces successful business results, you must be happy and satisfied with your personal life.
Look back on 2013 and think about your social and family life, your health, your finances and any other area of a personal nature. Remind yourself of things you’re proud of. Take note of areas of stress and concern. Think about what can be improved going forward.
Pick one area of focus to target as your top priority going into 2014. Perhaps you’ve noticed you are losing touch with your extended family but you haven’t the time or resources to make separate visits to relatives who’re scattered around the country or perhaps the globe. A biennial family reunion would address that issue. Setting a SMART goal is your first step to making this a reality. For example, “We will have a family reunion by August 30th.”
Break this goal down and establish what needs to be achieved each month to ensure progress is being made. Just as important, to generate momentum going into 2014, identify what needs to be accomplished before the end of this year. How about calling family members and running the idea by them? You can take it even further and get one relative to commit to either help you or to take the lead completely.
As we reach the end of the year, it’s easy to become stressed thinking of all the things you weren’t able to accomplish. Don’t allow yourself to become preoccupied with such thoughts. Instead, take time to remember what you did accomplish this past year.
Rather than stressing over lost revenue and missed sales goals, think about all the new contacts you made this year. What opportunities are now present as a result of these new relationships?
Undoubtedly, you’ve had many triumphs throughout the year. Focus on those, and on the impact they will have going forward.
Don’t automatically roll over all unaccomplished goals into the New Year. Suppose at the start of 2013, you set a goal to move your team into a new office space to accommodate anticipated growth. To decide if this goal should remain active going into 2014, you need to:
- Assess your assumptions: Before anything, you should reevaluate whether the growth projections are still accurate and whether they warrant making an office move at this time. Also, think about the desired outcome (i.e. what you hope to achieve) by moving into a new space. Is it increased productivity and efficiency and improved team cohesiveness? Take a step back and ask if these needs have already been achieved.
- Assess alternative solutions to achieving your goal’s desired outcome: Let’s assume the projections are still valid and that the desired outcome has not yet been achieved. Consider the consequences (both negative and positive) of making a move at this time. Ask if there are other ways to increase productivity and efficiency, and improve team cohesion during a time of growth. Also, consider if the goal and the desired outcome are still aligned with your vision. Then, decide how best to move forward.
You now have two priority goals to focus on going into 2014, one personal and one professional. For each goal, identify three potential obstacles. Plan how you will address these hurdles before they arise.
You and only you can define and decide what constitutes a distraction for you. When in doubt, simply ask yourself, “How does this help or hinder me in pursuit of my goals?”
We’re happy to talk with you about your plans, goals and focus for 2014. Contact us to schedule a free coaching session. Let’s generate momentum to propel you through the year.