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Not All New Year’s Resolutions Must Start at Square One

My client is an entrepreneur and an idea guy. As the cauldron of possibilities is stirred, the brew gains energy resulting in a powerful  aha! vortex.  This is  IT!   Shortly afterward, my client tends to spread himself too thin trying to realize his vision,which is the unfortunate downside of being an idea guy. This force is especially powerful when external factors, like a new year, allow him to put one year behind him and look toward the future of possibilities.  Today my client and I had our “What do you want in 2018?” coaching session and during that time, a whole new angle emerged.  Or did it?

The new year is a time of resolutions and new beginnings.  It’s a natural launching pad for new growth and prosperity.  However, sometimes we craft the new vision of ourselves without thoroughly examining the year that has just gone by for clues about what is already in alignment with that vision.  Much of the time, our New Year’s resolutions do not need to start at square one! We may just need a course correction, or a simple pruning of the hedge. .

I suggested the following activity:

  1. Revisit and articulate your vision.  Your greater purpose. The desired shape of your metaphorical hedge. Ask yourself how it is different from last year’s vision or from years past?  Is there a recurring theme?
  2. Create a model, framework,resolution,or plan for how you will achieve your vision for the new year.  What will you do yourself?  What will you ask others to do? What will you eliminate completely?
  3. Look back at the activities from 2017.  In the past year, what activities already support your 2018 scheme? What needs to be pruned away?
  4.  Identify strategies you will use to address the diversions and distractions that will invariably come up.

Not all resolutions need to be a bold rebirth.  The commonly cited statistic is that only 8% New Year’s resolutions stick.   That isn’t surprising because brains like efficiency like a child likes a well-established sled run.  It’s faster and requires less effort if you use the established pathway.  Self-awareness allows us to expose the prevailing undercurrents, modify them, and leverage them.

Despite the cold, the first few weeks of January are one of my favorite times of the year. After weeks of celebrating, it feels immensely satisfying to refocus for the new year.  It is a great time to not only look forward but to look back even several years, to position yourself for success.




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