The second month of the new year often finds us under the crushing stress of the broken resolutions. Somehow, promises made to ourselves don't always carry the weight or circumstance of breaking promises to others.
Yet, every year, we make the list:
- I will wake up earlier.
- I will get in shape.
- I will start writing that book (this one's personal).
- I will finally pull the trigger on that new business idea.
- My relationship will be improved and the garage will stay clean (these two are usually, oddly related).
And on, and on, and on.
Business goals and our body composition tend to dominate the landscape of New Year's resolution journals. Motivational business books litter the holiday and January best seller lists. January 1st gym membership sign ups hit new highs year after year.
As busy business men and women, uber-busy entrepreneurs, or just professionals looking for a breakthrough, the new year offers a ray of hope for our bank accounts and our waste lines.
Can you do it all?
Probably not. But you can do something. Even if that New Year's resolution has already fallen by the wayside, tomorrow is a new day. Like any of those soon to be executed business plans, the key to starting over on these resolutions is simplicity.
Keep it simple. Execute on a simple plan and win.
Here's your February not-too-late plan for getting those resolutions back on track:
1. Get laser-focused on your top priorities.
An entire section in Tim Ferris' new book, Tools for Titans, focuses on a system to help create and execute on the real needle moving priorities in your life. Many times, these most important items get lost in the over-crowded to-dos that clutter your list.
According to Ferris, we should set these most important items aside and do them first thing in the morning before the daily distractions arrive. Each of the next 30 days move the ball forward on these important priorities and see where you stand. By then, this will be a habit--one you'll actually want to keep.
2. Booze is your enemy.
I have a friend and business colleague who loves dark beer, darker whiskey and deep dark red wine. He's the CEO of an international app company and travels the world.
Each and every January, he abstains from the bottle. He says it helps him clearly focus on the year ahead. And on the fitness side, booze is a just a killer. Empty calories and hangovers do not a healthy year make.
Likewise, it's hard to be at your creative best and solve hard things from the bottom of a bottle of Advil. Cut it out as best you can for a solid month. Clear your head and cleanse your body. You'll thank me in 30 days.
3. Covet sweat equity--and actual sweat.
Every entrepreneur knows there is no replacement for putting in the work. The same can be said for putting in the work in the gym, so I've stolen two gym motivation hacks to help you get work done on the busiest of days.
First, don't rely on finding time for this most important work. Make time for it. For lots of us, that means becoming besties with that alarm clock. Want to know the secret to getting up early? Here it is: Set your alarm and get up. Take 30 days and get up before the sun rises each day.
Next, do what you can every day. For the next 30 days, schedule no days off from work--as you would for working out. None. Life will give you a day off sometimes, but your plan should be to do something everyday.
That's it. Three steps. Get focused, get clean, and do it everyday. Keep it simple and start tomorrow.
Any resolution worth trying is worth trying twice.