New Year’s is such a wonderful opportunity for making professional goals that align with our purpose. What’s not so great is that we keep so few of the resolutions that we make. Less than one in 10 resolutions, by some counts.
So here’s a challenge/opportunity: Make just one meaningful New Year’s resolution for 2017.
Why just one? Because you can’t get more simple and focused than one. It’s about making a decision to take action and owning it.
One is a popular motivational theme these days. I’m reading The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results by Gary Keller. Other titles include Your One Word by Evan Carmichael, One Word that Will Change Your Life by Dan Britton and Life Word: Discover Your One Word to Leave a Legacy by Jon Gordon.
Focus is so important. So is rehearsal. Over and over, as a sports agent, I saw this with elite performers: One small action repeated creates a big impact. Little habits build our comfort and confidence for doing big things.
The big challenge: Identify the one small thing and truly commit to create that big difference.
Make One Purposeful New Habit
To help get you thinking, here are examples of resolutions that are purposeful.
1. Write/revise your own personal mission statement tailored to your specific talents and goals. Commit to filtering your decisions (small ones and major ones related to your career) through your mission statement. This habit has made me more mindful and resolute about my calling to connect, inspire and lead with creative courage and optimism.
Using your personal mission statement as a filter will make you more mindful and resolute especially in finding your way through challenging crossroads of career and life. When you follow your “why” you are living purposefully.
2. Observe time away from electronics. This is a key habit for connecting and reconnecting with the people and activities that feed us. Some families I know have basket by the front door, where their phone and screens go while they reconnect face to face. Healthy “electronics hygiene” can mean leaving your electronics outside your room at night to avoid the beeps, dings and lights. Bonus: better sleep and health.
3. Value one opportunity at a time, especially regarding your physical fitness. To gain a long-term edge on your competition, don’t get ahead of yourself; stay in the now. For me, fitness paves the way to mental sharpness and stamina for a busy schedule and travel, and I’m always open to new methods that my help me stay strong. To pinpoint the legitimate discoveries and avoid fads, I rely on my coach Chris Johnson of On Target Living. You don’t need a coach to take one opportunity to improve your health in 2017. It will repay you many times over in your daily life.
4. Read one book, then another. I love autobiographies of historic figures such as Ben Franklin and contemporary ones like Steve Jobs. On the subject of staying focused on purpose, I definitely recommend Essentialism. Make it a goal to read one book per month in the new year.
5. Listen to one podcast a week. Tim Ferriss is very inspiring to listen to. I also like Andy Stanley’s leadership podcast, which really does help you go further, faster. If you think you don’t have time for a podcast, think again. A great podcast can be your go-to for even a short commute, because a big message can be captured in just a few minutes of listening.
6. Set up one daily reminder to stay curious. Curiosity drives personal growth, greater knowledge and wider perspective. Remind yourself to learn as much as you can, to ask questions and really listen, and remain that way even as you weather criticism. This single habit will change you inside and out as you connect to others in a deeper way and you begin to study your reactions, greatest desires and maybe even discover hidden talents. Siri can remind you of this habit, or use a calendar alert.
7. Map and pursue one step at a time to greater work fulfillment. Do yourself a favor and forget about your current job for a moment. What job do you want? Maybe it’s two levels up, or even three. It’s not undoable if you keep focused on where you are going, and stress less on where you are now. What can you do incrementally to move forward?
8. Make your one next move to a higher salary. A recap of my five steps to negotiation success is here and more details are in my book, A Winner’s Guide to Negotiating. Don’t negotiate from the dollar figure of your salary; focus on the value you bring to your company’s mission. Collect data to support your case, such as what you have brought into the pipeline and what is projected.
Your Game Changer Takeaway
One simple profound change can lead to greater meaning and living better in our mind, bodies and souls. Following your one resolution that ties into your personal mission will change your life in 2017. Small can be significant; in fact, great success is built on meaningful habits. Here’s to a simply inspired new year!
Molly Fletcher helps inspire and equip game changers to dream, live and grow fearlessly. A keynote speaker and author, Molly draws on her decades of experiences working with elite athletes and coaches as a sports agent, and applies them to the business world. Her e-learning courses spark both personal growth for individuals and corporate development for organizations. Sign up here to receive our monthly newsletter.