Coming towards the end of 1987 (I can’t believe that was 30 years ago) the Raw family had had a good year. Our daughter Bettina had come into our lives, born in a military hospital, we had arrived on New Years Eve in Berlin for a two year tour and we were all having a great time enjoying all the opportunities this exciting city had to offer – both in the West and East (this was before the Wall came down). I had made some resolutions at the beginning of the year that, despite my best intentions, I had not stuck to. For 1988 I wanted to do something different.
I want to be better than the previous year, to be more and do more for the people I support, my organisation and my family.
So at the start of each year (since 1988), instead of making resolutions (who keeps those?), I make commitments. The very word means that you are going to commit to a course of action (there is no going back!)
In the days leading up to this New Year, I have put down on paper what I am going to do and I thought it might be something that might help you to have your best year.
‘The most difficult thing is the decision to act; the rest is merely tenacity” Amelia Earhart
In 2018 believe in yourself:
- If you make mistakes (no one is perfect) accept that you will make mistakes, learn from them and keep going. “Failures are finger posts on the road to achievement” C S Lewis
- Don’t second guess yourself. You can only make the best judgement at the time with the facts in front of you but do make a decision (nobody likes a ditherer)
- It is easier to ask forgiveness than it is to ask for permission. Back yourself to do the right thing and do it now. (Nobody likes a procrastinator).
- No matter how busy or how much pressure you are under during your day, do one thing which you enjoy.
- Book yourself a coaching or mentoring session with your coach or mentor. Talk through your dreams and aspirations (try and fix up one of these meetings at least bi-monthly)
- Record your successes and read them through before you start your new week.
- When you are facing a crisis and you are coming under pressure, tell yourself two things: One: I have faced this before how did I deal with it then? And Two: In 6 months’ time will this situation be such a big deal? Probably not.
- Reward yourself. Something I picked up from running – if I had a good race I rewarded myself. It could have been a new pair of running socks or an energy bar, it doesn’t have to be much, but it can make you feel a whole lot better. Give yourself a pat on the back.
- Laugh whenever you can – it is cheap medicine
- Regularly (daily is best) go for a walk. Take a break- you only need to find 30 minutes in your day. It will refresh you and it will give you the time to think.
My 5 commitments for 2018:
- Running: Make time to go for a run 6 times a week and at the very least 5 sessions. I am going to smash my Personal Bests (PBs) well my over 60 year old ones.
- Objectives. Set myself 5 objectives (personal and work) to achieve before 11am (5 before 11) Monday – Friday. 3 on a Saturday and taking it easy on a Sunday with 2. That’s at least 30 achievements each week!
- Continued Professional Development (CPD) this year I am going to:
- Watch five x leadership and or inspirational presentations from Ted.com or YouTube per month
- Listen to at least one management CD per car journey
- Read at least 2 articles/essays from one of my management magazines per month
- Take in at least one Webinar on a bi-monthly basis
- Arrange a training session/workshop for the Dosh Team dosh.org (the company I work for) per quarter which I will take part in
- Publish a monthly leadership pack and a quarterly Dosh Newsletter
- Deliver a leadership workshop or presentation in 2018 which will require me to research and prepare for
- Deliver two Money Awareness Workshops for Managers
- Deliver two Project Management Workshops for Managers within my parent organisation thera.co.uk
- Meet with my Mentors at least three times in 2018 and regularly meet up with those I mentor.
- Health and Well Being. This year I am going to:
- Improve my sleep patterns – working towards getting at least seven hours sleep every night. (so no cups of tea for me after 7pm)
- Drink at least one bottle of water every day
- Stand up more instead of sitting down – especially when using my laptop
- Practice balancing on one leg at a time at least once a day (I got that one from Joyce)
- Practice Mindfulness at least once a day (I have learned this from Bettina)
- Cut down on sugar (at least 25% this year) – cutting down on chocolate will help me with this one
- Lose 10lbs in weight (according to my running magazines this will knock 1.5 minutes of my 5KM time!)
- Eliminate Waste. Look at every part of my professional and personal life and eliminate waste – what am I wasting time on? What am I duplicating? What savings (financially) can I make that will not effect my performance and the difference I want to make in other peoples lives?
Courtesy of Dosh Ltd www.dosh.org this is going to be my ‘Big 5’ too
Smarter Efficient Up-to-date Streamlined Responsive
“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds you plant” Robert L Stevenson
In 2018 I will take a step back (often) and I will think about what I have in my life and be grateful for everything that comes my way. If it happens to be a failure I will see it as my first and second step towards my next success. I will understand that failure is not permanent and neither is success, so I will prepare for both this year.
On 31 December 2018 I am going to read this piece again to see how I got on before I make a new set of commitments for 2019. Why? Because I want 2019 to be my best year yet!
“Expect the best, plan for the worst & prepare to be surprised” Denis Waitley
Steve – you are an inspiration! I have taken a number or your commitments into my list for 2018. Thank you and good luck. We will compare notes through the year and do more things together – that’s a commitment!