One of the best things about a new year is the prospect of a fresh start. Traditionally, the most popular resolutions are health-related ones, such as “start exercising” and “stop smoking.” And “lose weight,” of course.
Just as sticking to a diet can be tough, so can sticking to business goals. If you’re an entrepreneur (or want to become one), you may be looking at January as an opportunity to make changes or take other action. How can you stay just as motivated in six months – or maybe even in six days — as you are now?
Over the years, I’ve found that it helps to be selective about New Year’s goals and to think about how to implement them. If you’d like to try this approach, here are a few tips:
• Go for quality, not for quantity. Better to have three or four solid goals than a long wish list you’ll never get through.
• Push yourself without being ridiculous. Choose goals that excite you and make you stretch — but also are within reach.
• Be specific. Example: Rather than “Have a stronger social media presence,” go for something like “Tweet once a day” or “Outreach three new LinkedIn contacts every week.”
• Set dates. A timeline for completing steps towards a goal gives you an action plan.
• Share your goals with others. These “witnesses” can help hold you accountable.
• Tape your goals to your bathroom mirror (or some place else where they will be highly visible). They won’t do you any good if you stick them in a drawer and forget about them.
• Stay flexible. The unexpected may force you to revise, recalibrate or scale back. That’s okay as long as you’re still moving forward.
• Check off completed goals. Each mark will be a visual indicator of your progress – and make you feel good about yourself.
Wishing you all the best for 2013 —