Five Ways to Start 2013 Strong

2013 Concept New Year ClockAs we continue our exploration of how to end 2012 strong, let’s start to cast our eyes upon 2013. You can make decisions right now that will set you on course to succeed… or stagnate… next year. I am going to work under the assumption you prefer the former so here are some ways to start 2013 with a bang!

1. Plan, plan, plan, plan

Look you and I both know what a drag writing up a plan can be. It is always the thing on your to do list that you procrastinate most about for good reason. It doesn’t feel like it is getting things done (after all you are planning to do things not doing them) and it is just plain hard. But you and I both know how successful businesses that don’t plan are… they aren’t.

2. Listen to (and follow) your best advice

Brutal honesty time here… the other day I was rereading a blog post I had written earlier in the year and in it I saw a piece of advice that was (if I do say so myself) really good. Here is the weird thing, I am not following that advice. I think we all do this from time, we know what we should be doing and we share it as advice even if we aren’t necessarily abiding by it. In preparation for 2013, think about something you have advised someone else to do it and take on the practice yourself!

3.  Create a short list of big things you will accomplish next year and share it

There are a few steps to this one. First, think through what the big wins for your company would be.  Perhaps opening a new location. Perhaps launching a redesigned and rethought out website (YAY, let’s talk!), whatever it is pick a few and write them down. Now when I say a few, I literally mean a few… like three. You need to be realistic.  A year seems to be a huge quantity of time in the abstract but we all know that it will pass in the blink of an eye. Now share that list with a trusted friend, advisor or accountability partner. The sad true (for me at least) is that you are far more likely to do something if someone else is expecting it of you.

4. Mentor someone

This is one of those things that I am betting I am going to put down as great advice and then not do (see #2). That is a shame because I love the feeling you get when you mentor someone. Yes, of course it is partly the feeling of doing something good for the world but it is more than that.  The bigger benefit is the feeling expertise you get when someone listens with rapt attention to you as you share your expertise. It is an ego lift to hear yourself sound smart

5. Commit publicly to doing one new thing

At the beginning of 2012 I started a Spring Insight newsletter. It is a logical move for a company like mine and doesn’t seem like a huge thing but I thought a lot about it before I did it. A newsletter is a commitment. It doesn’t matter what is going on or how busy/lazy/under the weather I am on any given month, I have to get the newsletter out. It is one thing to fail your best intentions, it is a another completely to fail at a commitment you have made.

I would love to hear other ideas you have for starting the year strong.


PS. There is still time to help me save the world!