New Year’s Resolutions. They sound great and can even be inspirational, but they have a tendency to willow away before January is half over. Many people shift their focus to their resolutions in the attempt to accomplish everything at once. There’s almost a suspects list of New Year’s resolutions – lose weight, grow our business, make more money, and travel more. BUT what is equally maybe even more important is focusing things to stop doing. Removing the daily bad habits from your professional and personal life will produce big dividends. Here are some simple to apply steps to engage with a positive mindset and keep those resolutions.
- Stop Making Excuses – they are like ____; everyone has them and they all stink.
If you’re saying “but”, “should have”, “supposed to” or “try” then whatever you were working on did not happen. When something doesn't go as planned, the first instinct is often to deflect blame and responsibility to someone or something else. We constantly hear excuses like my business failed because . . ., my marriage failed because of my partner, or our all-time favorite while growing up . . .I lost the lacrosse game because of the referee. These excuses are extremely harmful to your professional and personal growth as they don’t address the actual problem, but instead, attempt to skirt around it.
Excuses do not make things better. You are responsible for what happens – for good or for bad. If you are not learning, you’re stagnating. For example, understanding that you decided to avoid investing in proper marketing for your business could be the reason why you had to file for bankruptcy. Your lack of marketing could easily have been why new customers did not show up.
These excuses also distract us from our goals because we are subconsciously letting ourselves off the hook. It is the mind’s way of protecting us from shame or anxiety from not accomplishing what we set out to do. In the end, your mind doesn’t want to hurt your ego. But what good is it protecting our ego if it robs our opportunity of accomplishing our goals? Indeed, getting over yourself and mastering your ego might be the most important resolution of all.
Moral of the story: Take responsibility for your actions and switch your mindset to being proactive rather than reactive.
- Stop brushing your finances under the carpet
There is one resolution that seems to always fall by the wayside. No, it’s not the exercise one. The biggest one, whether it be personal or business, is getting finances in order. I know, you don’t want to look at all the money you have spent on filling up your closet with one too many t-shirts, or those 10 pairs of shoes that came from a bout of “retail therapy”. Instead of closing your eyes and blindly handing over your financial documents to your accountant, this year you need to take responsibility and be the CFO that your business and family needs. Can you answer these questions?
- What is your cost of client acquisition?
- What is your profit margin?
- What is your marketing spend?
- What are your key industry stats?
Until you can answer these questions, there are probably some holes in the money bucket.
- Stop procrastinating planning for the future
“Hope is not a strategy.” These are powerful 5 words. You can hope that your business will grow and double in revenue. You can hope that your 5-year-old will not throw a tantrum every morning right before it is time to get in the car to go to school. Absent an action plan to change things, there will be no follow thru.
Thus, no changes occur and 2019 would look like 2018. Why do people constantly wait for Monday to start planning or changing their habits?
Here are four things you should resolve to plan for in your business:
- What is something unexpected that could be planned for?
- What do you “wing it” that instead could be systemized?
- What if you become incapacitated and can no longer act on behalf of your business?
- What is your natural disaster plan?
Taking some time to work on the answers to these questions has two benefits. 1) You get to keep you New Year’s resolution. 2) You get peace of mind, which helps you sleep better at night.
Because the foundation of your life is your family, here are 4 things for you to resolve to plan in 2019:
- Create your Living Will and assign a Health Care Power of Attorney
- File a Pre-Need Guardianship for your kids
- Create your estate plan
If you need some help doing your planning, either for you or your business email us your questions.
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