January 2019 Te Contractor’s Advantage
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Setting Goals and Looking Ahead Into the New Year
For a lot of people, January is a month of setting goals and resolutions. It’s a time of looking ahead and planning for the future. As for myself, well, I am very much a goal setter! I keep spreadsheets with my goals, which I update weekly. On Friday afternoons, I sit down and check in with myself, updating what I’ve accomplished toward each goal. A big part of my goal-setting process are set points. Nearly every goal I work on has a set point — markers I set along the way to completing a goal. A set point is a way to hold myself accountable and make course corrections if I need to. For example, if I wanted to lose weight — or maintain a certain weight — a set point would be getting on the scale every Friday morning. If I’m maintaining the “goal” weight, I move to the next set point and check in again the following Friday, and so on. But if I’ve put on a little weight, I know I need to make a change to stay on track. That’s another major part of goal setting that doesn’t often come up during the process itself — a correction protocol. You need to have a plan to correct yourself if you do get off track. If I’m trying to maintain a specific weight, I know I need to eat better or get more exercise, or both, so I need to plan for that. More on set points and correction protocols in this month’s Level With Me. When it comes to setting the goals, I try to set aside time on an annual basis to determine what I want to accomplish. I may set aside a Saturday when the phones aren’t ringing, the computer is off, and there are no
distractions. It’s a chance to think about what I want to accomplish in the coming weeks, months, or years. In many ways, it’s a meditation ritual. I clear my mind, get plenty of exercise in the morning, and stay hydrated throughout the day. It is just me and my thoughts. For 2018, one of my goals was to read 50 books. I’ll admit it was a challenge. When I set that goal a year ago, I found it difficult to create specific set points. It all came down to finding time to read. I ended up reading a total of 47 books by December 2018. I may not have hit my 50-book goal, but I’m happy with the results. When you read, you learn. Each of those 47 books brought something to the table, Right now, I’m looking ahead to the new year. I’m always working on growing personally and professionally. On the personal side of things, one of my goals is to spend more time with my kids, who are 4 and 6. One way I’m spending more time with them is through teaching and learning. This year, I’ll be helping them develop and I can say I learned something and I am a big believer in the saying “Leaders are readers.”
new skills and understand technology. Because we live in a technology-driven world, not to mention a technology- based future, having an understanding of how new technology works can be incredibly valuable. I’ve been helping build that foundation, teaching them how machines and programming work and how we interact with them. I’ve taught them that machines will only do what we tell them to do. It can be hard for kids to grasp at first, but I created a simple board game with action cards to help them visualize how machines and programming work on a basic level. Of course, as they learn, we get to spend a lot of time bonding and just being together.
No matter what your own goals may be, here’s to a wonderful new year!
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