Setting Your Year Up For Success

We made it, phew–through the holidays, through the beginning of the New Year, and now we are a couple weeks into 2017. Did you set intentions for 2017? Are you still moving towards those intentions, or did you toss them out with last year’s calendar? Some people love goals and roadmaps, others find them restrictive. I admit that if I set a goal for myself and don’t meet it (even if I come close) I feel like a failure. Too many goals can be just as bad as too few. That’s why I prefer to use the word intentions. The bottom line is, no matter what term you use, if you want to change—if you want to improve your life and your business—you need to first change yourself. Here are some techniques I use to make those changes and reach my yearly intentions.

Create Your Road Map

Some people may disagree, but I find if I want to succeed I need to create a road map. I like seeing where I am going as well as where I have been. That means I take the time to think things out, to set my intentions, and to see where I need to change to make my intentions happen. This is a living document, though, and I may modify it many times throughout the year. My advice is to remain flexible, to keep your eye on the prize ahead, yes, but to look to the sides as well—don’t be so rigid and blindered that you don’t see the new and exciting opportunities all around you.

Whatever your intentions, dreams, desires, or goals, they should be important to you. Does that seem silly to say? Not really—think about it. Everyone has an opinion, right? How many of us are trying to meet someone else’s goals? Well, don’t let others intrude on your intentions. Your intentions must be important to YOU and no one else. Further, YOU need to see the value in achieving them. If you have little interest in the outcome, then what’s the point? You are not setting yourself up for success. Your intentions are your dreams and desires and no one else needs to understand them or even to know about them, really. They are personal; they are yours—make them and keep them so.

Write Down What You Want to Accomplish in 2017

To set yourself up for success, write down what you want to accomplish this year. Putting your goals in writing makes them real. Writing them down enforces your commitment. Plus, once they are in writing, you can post them in a spot where you can reference them daily. Seeing them, reminding yourself about them, will keep you motivated to stay on the path to success. This year, I have taken it a step further and created a vision board of my intentions. Seeing my intentions in the flesh, so to speak, is a terrific motivator for me. If someone else sees my board they will have no idea what each picture means—but I do. My vision board is a constant reminder to stay on the right track.

How Do You Achieve those Goals?

Great. You set your goals. Now what? How do you go about achieving them in 2017? Want to know a secret? This is the way I set my days up for success and stay on track to meet my intentions. I make a point to take time for myself. I meditate, I exercise, or I journal every day. On a good day I do all three, and well before the workday begins. Taking this essential time to center myself is an absolute requirement for me if I want to stay sane. What keeps you grounded and prepares you for your day? Schedule it into your morning routine and watch the magic begin. Use this time to personally reaffirm your intentions. Keep them in the forefront of your vision, which in turn opens you up to new ideas, guides, or assistance that may present themselves throughout the day.

To keep myself productive and moving forward, I choose the most challenging, important, or profitable task to do first. Once I have completed this task, I find it easier and less stressful to manage the rest of my day. I try very hard not to procrastinate. There are days I accomplish this, and others I fall into the Facebook rabbit hole and fail miserably. But don’t beat yourself up. Each day is a fresh opportunity to take control. Not procrastinating and tackling challenges head on keeps you focused on your end goal.

Don’t Allow Yourself to get Overwhelmed

I also find I do better if I don’t multi-task, which seems to go against the grain these days. Hear me out. We all have a ton of things to do every day, and adding our intentions to this list can be overwhelming. You think you have to multi-task to get everything done. Then you get overwhelmed and say “Screw it” and don’t do anything. That’s how I get when I try to do too many things at once. To stay on track, I prefer to work on one task at a time. I call it many-tasking instead of multi-tasking. Set yourself a readily do-able task—it may be one step in a larger project—and work until it is finished, then move quickly to the next task. I have learned to switch gears quickly, and in this way, I accomplish many different tasks in a day. Try it and see if it works for you.

Whether they might be for business growth, better health, deeper friendships, or financial stability—your 2017 intentions are yours alone. You have the power to make them happen and to set yourself up for success. My sincere wish for you is to find and develop a technique that serves you and helps you reach those goals. Read, research, talk to professionals, and be open to possibilities and suggestions on the side of the road. You never know when THAT tidbit of information is going to be the rocket fuel that propels you into the stratosphere. Let’s ROCK 2017!

WEF Treasurer, Wendy McClellan

Women's Enterprise Foundation, Wendy McClellan

About Wendy McClellan:

I am a business professional who loves what I do. I believe in fostering and nurturing strong relationships and I believe that effective communication is the key to success in business. I have worked in the business world a s a leader and executive for over two decades, I have built companies from the ground floor, and I have coached do zens of managers t o become the leaders the y never thought they would be.

My company, Structure for Success, works with small business owners who are feeling overwhelmed with their employee relations. I specialize in Human Resource consulting, which means I assist small business owners make educated decisions and I assist them in getting back t o what the y are good a t – being the owner of their company.


Structure 4 Success