We are two weeks away from the New Year and I’ve already started to hear it and see it all over the place. The media, gurus and psychics telling everyone it’s time to make New Year’s resolutions for your business and personal life.
Okay be honest, New Year’s business resolutions don’t work.
Let’s look at the definition according to Wikipedia: “A New Year’s business resolution is a commitment that an individual makes to a project or the reforming of a habit, often a lifestyle change that is generally interpreted as advantageous. The name comes from the fact that these commitments normally go into effect on New Year’s Day.”
So with that in mind, how can you realistically make a commitment to a project that is not well thought out? Or you have not done any detailed planning for? In order to see results, your business resolutions have to be more than a straight list otherwise they will be forgotten long before Valentine’s Day.
Before you start adding to your “I resolve…List” think about the business resolution in two parts:
- Planning which includes both the large and small details needed to successfully accomplish this business goal.
- Accountability helps motivate you to achieve any goal.
How can you easily plan your resolutions? Using an uncomplicated technique called mind mapping. Basically it’s a diagram with pictures; words or both that represents your ideas and/or tasks.
There are plenty of software tools available to create your mind maps. The one I use, MindMeister is amazingly simple, great for beginners and is included in money saving small business toolbox. They have an excellent list of public mind maps to give you an idea how other individuals as well as business owners are using this tool and a short tutorial video to get you started.
Back to your resolutions; time to use MindMeister to brainstorm. Create your first mind map called 2011 business goals. Then use the “add” button to add as many tasks, ideas or details you need. Don’t worry about arranging them in any type of order you are brainstorming. MindMeister allows you to conveniently provides a drag and drop feature to move your thoughts around any time. The idea is to first get your thoughts out of your head then second clarify the details.
What you will quickly discover is its time to review and recommit to your business goals on a more frequent basis. In fact many people think about their goals only once a year and I want you to change that behavior.
Stay tuned, accountability will be discussed in part two next week. You will be introduced to a simple online tool with 3 steps for ingraining new habits to easily achieve your goals.
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