The Magic Week

The week between Christmas and New Year’s is a magic one. Work is slow, often slow enough to enjoy some reading, planning, thinking time. An excellent time to take a look at your plans for 2015. I’m against making New Year’s resolutions, for three simple reasons:

How to protect a cactus from a freeze. The secret is knowing what will save a plant and what wastes time and materials.

How to protect a cactus from a freeze. The secret is knowing what will save a plant and what wastes time and materials. Planning for 2015 uses the same rules.

1. They are generally too big or too vague to succeed. (I want to eat a healthy diet; I want to lose 20 pounds, I want to have a better relationship with X.)

2. There are no how-to steps or plans to break the task from bigger to smaller steps. Nothing fails faster than a big plan with no small victories and check-in days.

3. There is no support system. Unless you enroll a support system, your family and friends will not want you to change. When you change, they will also have to change, and they didn’t sign up for that. They will send you change-back messages until you cave and give up.

So what to think about 2015? Start with things that worked well for you in 2014.

We all meet dips in our lives. We don't always get warnings.

We all meet dips in our lives. We don’t always get warnings.

A relationship that went well. A success at work. A goal you met. Anything that worked well. Write it down. Describe it in detail. Celebrate your success. Continued success is built on previous, recognized, success.

Next, look at where you started in 2014 and how far you have come. Overcoming difficulties. Skirting tough times with grace. OK, without grace, but with persistence. Looking back to see how far you have come is a necessary step to keep moving ahead.

It’s tempting to think of the person you would like to be in 2015. Even more tempting to make it a whole new person. But it’s far more worthwhile spending your time finding yourself than trying to be someone new.

–Quinn McDonald is a creativity coach, writer, and business trainer who is planning for 2015 in a week that also includes a lot of reading and sleeping.

 

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