New Year Resolution ListEvery year I set goals so I can focus myself. But recently, I was inspired to slightly alter that process and have added there new ideas to refresh my goal setting process.  Consider answering these questions: what can you let go of?; what can you add to your don’t do list?;  and what do you want to feel more of?


1. What can you let go of? In a recent NY Times article, writer Thomas Friedman talked about how Mandela was able to make progress in South Africa because he didn’t make it about his need for retribution. Instead, he was able to move from racism to pluralism without stopping for revenge. What Mandela did is so challenging for most of us humans.  

Recently, I was working with a team that had experienced some problems functioning together.  I met with all of the team members to help me understand why one of the team members had been difficult to work with. This supposedly difficult team member who I will call Fred had been treated unfairly and wanted some acknowledgement. Once Fred felt heard by me and realized that holding on to anger  wasn’t serving him, he started to consider letting go.  Fred’s need for retribution is a completely normal feeling. Which one of us isn’t holding on to a grudge? What helped Fred is asking the question – how is this serving me?  What do you need to let go of to move forward?

2. What can you add to your don’t do list? Jean Otte, the founder of Women Unlimited, is a mentor of mine.  She’s a pioneer and a very successful woman.  My favorite idea from her recent talk about how to stay focused was to identify tasks to NOT do. As a small business owner, I am always trying to find more time to focus on making money. Tasks such as travel arrangements or anything relating to billing and invoices are the tasks I don’t like to do and so I try to delegate as much as possible. What can you add to your don’t do list? 

3. What do you want to feel more of this year?  I want to feel more challenge….playful challenge. I love reading those Corner Office articles by Adam Bryant in the NY Times.  Recently, he wrote about Eileen Martinson, the CEO of Sparta Systems, and she said if you aren’t making any mistakes, you are not going fast enough.  Eileen advocates learning from mistakes so there’s such a thing as “being too careful” . As a perfectionist, I don’t enjoy making mistakes and looking stupid. But, I like the feel of challenging myself to push my boundaries. This year I have decided to stretch more out of my comfort zone.  This means that I want to play tennis against people who can beat me, ski down a mountain that scares me, work with coaching clients who challenge me and pilot new ideas. What about you?

New year resolutions are sometimes daunting and hard to follow through but if we think about it differently, these resolutions can become  inspirations and things that make our lives easier and richer.  What do you consider when you plan on making your 2014 an outstanding one?  I hope each of you can make the time to enjoy yourselves!


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