Thanksgiving is just behind us. It’s December 2nd. And that means that Christmas is just around the corner.
Which means that 2017 is almost here.
2016 has come and gone and in about a month, millions of people throughout the world are going to sit down and try to convince themselves that they will do better in 2017.
They’re going to eat better.
They’ll exercise more often.
They’ll work on their business with more urgency.
They’ll start a business.
Some will succeed with their new resolutions and goals.
The dirty truth is that most won’t.
But it’s become so engrained in our lives that a new year means a renewed focus on our goals that we all do it.
If we don’t, we fell like we’re being “lazy” or unmotivated.
However, the reality of the situation is that new year’s resolutions rarely work.
You don’t need scientific evidence for this.
Just take a look at your own life.
How many times have you kept a new year’s resolution the entire year?
How many times have you kept it for six months?
Not very often if you’re like most people.
Which is why I changed the way I focus on goals a few years ago.
I was like you.
I waited until the new year hit before telling myself that I was going to stay focused on this or that.
But I ran into the same problems as everyone else. Being unable to carry those goals out to the very end.
So instead, I decided I was going to start planning for the new year in November, right after Thanksgiving.
Here’s why it works.
First , you’re coming from a or starting out from a place of positivity instead of negativity.
Think about the normal way of going about figuring out your goals for the new year.
You’ve just been through a very stressful holiday season.
You have had less time than usual to find clients, work on your business, market your products, create new ones.
You’ve also been eating like crap, filling yourself up with treats and goodies and not working out or exercising at all.
So when it’s time to make your goals for the new year, you are making them based on your last month of activity.
They’re based on the lackluster performance you’ve had in December, but you don’t take into consideration that you just finished with the biggest holiday of the year.
So you’re telling yourself that you sucked it up, that you’re doing terribly and that you need to change big time.
Which may be the case, but usually isn’t.
On the other hand, think about defining your goals for the new year after Thanksgiving.
Thanksgiving is not nearly as commercialized as Christmas. It’s basically one day where you get together with family and eat one meal.
The day is focused on giving thanks for the blessings you have.
So you focus on that. Where you’re at and where you’ve come from.
The progress you’ve made.
You see how far you’ve come and you can appreciate it and give thanks for that.
At the same time, you can appreciate that you still have work to do.
But this desire to become better is not based on one month of poor performance.
Instead its based on the previous 11 months of activity.
You see a more wholistic view of your real progress.
Whether that’s progress with your health or progress with your business.
At the same time, you can anticipate that you have a rough month coming up ahead in December and account for that.
You can be proactive instead of being reactive to the month once it’s over.
Second, you’ll have a jump on your competition.
Nearly everyone waits to get focused starting with the new year.
But if you get focused a month and a half easier, you’ll have the jump.
Think about someone wanting to focus on their health more by going to the gym.
If you started in November, you could have a solid base under you by the time the gyms get crowded in early January.
With that solid base, you wouldn’t have to fight for the lighter weights or easy machines that most new gym goers will be wanting to use.
You will have moved past that and can be using other, less-used equipment to continue your workouts, all because you started just a month earlier.
Same goes if you have a goal to improve your translation business by getting more clients and finding higher paying jobs.
If you start at the end of November instead of waiting until the end of December or the start of the new year, you will have a month on your competition.
While most translators will be taking time off during the holidays, you will be using that time to get ahead and be in front of your goal by the time the new year hits.
You will have reached out to new potential clients and started negotiating with current clients to increase your pay rate.
Nobody says that you have to wait until the new year to get started on what you want.
That is a procrastination mindset in action. We are always looking for a time that can be a “new beginning” and the new year fits in perfectly for that.
But always trying to find that time for a new beginning is not how we should look to improve ourselves because that is basically just an excuse to not face reality.
And an excuse to not want to get started.
People say that starting anything is the hardest part.
That’s a whole new post about starting.
But starting can be the hardest step to overcome so we often grab onto anything that will push back the time when we should start something.
We tell ourselves that it’s a good break and that it makes sense to wait until we have a good time to start, but it’s always just an excuse.
Instead, if you started now, right after Thanksgiving you’d be ahead.
You would have already started, thus getting past the first (and hardest) hurdle.
So what are you waiting for?
Get started. Today.
P.S. A great way to get started is to have your very own website.