We all know that New Year’s resolutions are much easier to make than to keep. Yet we keep making them year after year.  Most people have at least one or two things they’d like to improve on personally, and many people — including refrigeration contractors — make resolutions for their professional lives and their companies as well. 

That’s why an email that arrived the other day caught my eye. It was from Gretchen Hydo of Any Lengths Life Coaching. Hydo, a certified life and business coach, offered five tips to help people keep their New Year’s resolutions and meet their goals. I found them interesting and useful, and thought I would share them with you.

Tip #1: Set SMART goals. SMART stands for specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely. On a personal level, that may mean stating, “I will run on Tuesday and Thursday mornings for at least 20 minutes to build my endurance, so I can participate in a relay race at my kid’s fundraiser this summer.” At your company, a SMART goal could be, “I will meet with each of my employees each month for 30 minutes to gain their insights into how we can make this the best company in town. I will compile their ideas, and as we implement the best ones throughout the year, I will use customer surveys to determine which ones are the most important to and popular with our customers.” 

Tip #2: Define your “why?” When people make resolutions or set goals, they may want the result but don’t necessarily want to do the work that it takes to get there. When you define your why — your reason for wanting to make a change — you will be more likely to achieve it. To make your why successful, make sure the payoff is relevant to your life and big enough to keep you motivated.

Tip #3: Visualize. To be successful in reaching your goal, it’s important to visualize yourself on each step of the journey. While the end goal is important, knowing the steps you will have to take along the way to reach it are paramount to your success.  Make sure you honestly see yourself as you are now, and visualize how you will be once you reach your destination.  Make it real. How do you look and feel after achieving this goal? What did you have to let go of along the way? Who helped you get there? How is your life better because of this change?

Tip #4: Take baby steps. When goals are too big, they become overwhelming. That’s why it often helps to break down a big goal into many smaller goals. To reach your ultimate goal, pick one mini goal at a time, achieve it, and then go on to the next one.

Tip #5: Get support. Breaking habits and patterns isn’t easy. It takes more than willpower to do things differently. Make sure you get the support you need to reach the finish line. Involve your partner or your team in your goal so that you are surrounded by people who can walk with you on your journey.

The bottom line is that it takes more than desire to keep a resolution or reach a goal — it takes analysis, planning, action, and support. Hang onto this article as the glow of the New Year fades and the realities of daily life in the business world step back to the forefront. I hope you will find it helpful in reaching both your personal and professional goals. And best wishes to all FROSTlines readers in 2017!

Publication date: 1/3/2017       

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