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New Year's Resolutions
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In my last newsletter I suggested that Advent was a great time to begin your planning for the next year. The time between Christmas and New Year's Day is a great time to finish it. Do not stress too much if it does not get done before the bowl games. This planning stuff is an ongoing process.

You should have already pondered your four areas of renewal - physical, spiritual, mental, and social and listed your different roles such as CEO of your company, soccer coach, husband, mother, head of church finance committee, etc. Beside each role and renewal category write down what you want to accomplish next year. For example, do you want to lose 20 pounds, run a 5K, increase sales by 20%?

Then go back and list the obstacles keeping you from obtaining those results. What are the specific issues blocking this improved performance?

The next step is to come up with specific action items that will overcome those obstacles. Some of these action items will be one shot deals, others might be a change of a habit, and others that you plan to do during specific parts of the year. Some of your roles may already have action items listed such as board meetings, conferences, etc. Those are things that are going to consume your time so they need to be accounted for. 

The last step is to get items documented on your calendar. I first put items in monthly time buckets. As the month arrives I put those on weekly time list and then I plan each day.

This sounds like a lot of work. Believe me, it isn't. It is actually sort of fun and may make you rethink some priorities. 

You may think that to have things so closely scheduled that it leaves no time to be spontaneous. I have found the opposite to be true. By organizing my time I actually have more wiggle room or protective capacity as I call it, to react to challenges and opportunities that come up.

You should also scrap your electronic device/mobile phone for this endeavor. Research indicates that the mechanics of writing stuff down enhances the planning process. Typing it up afterwards in a document is certainly useful. 

I hope some of these tips are helpful. I have been using this basic process for over 40 years and it has served me well. 

If you have any questions or if there is anything I can do to help you in this process, give us a shout either by email or by calling us at (205) 759 - 8259.

Happy New Year from the Chesapeake Gang!


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