It’s January, the month of resolutions, of planning, of strategizing what we hope to accomplish in the new year ahead.
Personally, I don’t make resolutions. Although there are a few things I could change about me, I know that making resolutions is a waste of time. Why? Because I know I’m probably not going to stop procrastinating, there will still be clutter around my house, and even though I pay for membership to our local YMCA, I’m still going to struggle to get my butt over there. (That’s just who I am.)
I typically make goals instead.
Every year I make a list of things that I hope to accomplish in the 12 months that lay ahead of me. Some goals are personal, like find a new kitchen table that better accommodates our family or paint the master bedroom. I might even unpack the last of the boxes from our move 3.5 years ago. (This particular item has to do with that procrastination thing I mentioned above.)
I also spend a fair amount of time setting goals for my business. So, during the last week of 2012, I took out a notebook and started jotting down all of the things I hope to accomplish in 2013, like
- Conduct a webinar once a month.
- Write an eBook on IP for Entrepreneurs.
- Blog every Tuesday and Thursday.
- Build my “List”.
- Make lots of money.
When I finished this year’s list, I felt pretty good about it. With a little effort, each item is pretty easy to accomplish, and if I accomplished every item on the list, I would certainly move by business forward.
Or so I thought.
I was proud of myself and my list. That is until I read David Ackert’s blog post, Three Words for 2013. David doesn’t make resolutions. Instead, David uses Chris Brogan’s “My 3 Words” concept for New Year’s planning.
The 3 words idea is simple. You identify 3 words that serve as themes for the upcoming year. These words are supposed to “sum up what you want to work actionably on changing/improving in the coming year.” According to Chris Brogan, choosing 3 words to focus on helps you look at the bigger story.
“The big story is that which we want to believe about our life and our goals and our plan…Goals are a way of knowing that you’re headed in the direction of your…story.”
So I took another look at my list.
My list was just a list of individual action items. It’s not a bad list, but merely a laundry list, a to-do list. It didn’t say anything about what I want to be true and to believe about my life. Where was my “big story”?
So I came up with my 3 words.
If I dare to step out of my comfort zone and communicate my message to those who need to hear it, I will earn respect, an audience, and money.
That’s a pretty powerful story.
I challenge you to try this exercise. Let me know what your 3 words are in the comments below.