It’s time for New Years Resolutions and Prediction blog posts, or as I like to call it: Strategically avoiding work by coming up with potential work that you’re not doing because it’s not really important to you. Doubt that? Here is my example: Every day I look in the mirror I see a huge spare tire around my otherwise normal looking 12 year old girl body. Is it important to me not to be fat? Of course. Is it more important to me than hot dogs with bacon toppings or prosciutto and brie snacks? The mirror answers that question pretty well and I don’t have a six pack for a reason. I’m OK with that.
You should also come to terms with the parts of your life or business that you dislike but don’t dislike enough to change. And here is a really fucked up part:
If you really had the capacity to have resolve and restraint, how did you end up in your situation to begin with?
Resolve to stop bullshitting yourself: You don’t like to sell. You’re not good at marketing. You like doing shit that doesn’t materially impact your company/career. Focus on winning the Ms. Congeniality award instead.
Do and Don’t Of People Who Aren’t Pathetic
Do come up with small plans. Personally, I don’t do annual plans: I don’t have the attention span to do anything for more than two weeks. In fact, two weeks in Vladville may as well be eternity. If you’re going to do something, do something small and get in the groove.
Do not come up with vague objectives. Whatever you do better be measurable and documented. Write it down. Throw a reminder in your calendar to remind you to check how you’re doing.
Do not share you’re your objectives. If this is not something that directly benefits/hurts those around you, don’t share it. Again, honesty, you got into this for a reason and likely on your own. You don’t need people around you “supporting” you. If you can’t stop yourself from eating the 16th hot dog at the all-you-can-eat BBQ then what is the point of having people around you avoid hot dogs if at the first sight of one you lose control. Through the damn gauntlet, if you can’t learn discipline you’re just bound to be right back where you started at.
Do come up with a punishment. Most people only think of rewards. Tough love moment here – if positive reinforcement worked on you then you wouldn’t have stuff to change, you’d easily motivate yourself to change anything you disliked immediately and you wouldn’t have resolutions. Besides, who really gets hurt if you don’t make that one more sales call, followup or cross of another to-do item? Exactly, it can wait till tomorrow and nobody is around to slap you. So slap yourself.
Like I said, while I have a general idea of what I need to do in the following year, I have weekly or monthly plans at best. And in my world (and yours) the only finite item is: time.
So with a schedule that is already packed… I ask myself: If I am about to implement this change, where does the time come out of? Maybe I’m alone at this.. but my mediocre effort almost always produces pitiful results. I am only effective when I am at something 100%, 100% of the time. So if I’m taking up something, what else am I willing to see go to shit? But that’s just me.
Even though I’m on the border of the millennial generation, nobody has ever given me shit. Once you have to build your own business and work for every dollar you get a more sincere appreciation for the value of time and just how much more, proportionally, effort it’s going to take to make an additional dollar. Which is something many employees will never understand, as they expect a raise just because they did the job they were paid to do. And if you share that mentality, maybe you should be working for someone too.
So calculate your tradeoffs, look at your objectives, keep them to yourself, measure them and kick yourself in the nuts every time you fail yourself.