Start Your Naughty List Now

good_versus_badHow could it be coming on the end of the year? Where did this year go? Is that how you feel?

Are you looking back and thinking where did you go wrong?

Do you have a sense that this year could have been so much bigger for you?

If you are looking back with some regret, with lingering doubts that you did your best: there is a solution.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year to PLAN for the coming one. Take out a big sheet of paper and mark down the milestones you will reach. Write down the actions that you must get to. Imagine what can happen when a fresh new calendar is awaiting you.

There’s only one catch. You must acknowledge what you meant to have happen this year. You have to account for what got in the way. It’s time to write an annual naughty list, so you only reward and move forward with the nice.

If you want to avoid repeating the same patterns that led you astray from your goals, it’s time to take a hard look at what- and who – didn’t work for you this year.

I am sorry that blame has become a synonym for self-righteousness. It’s ridiculous that we don’t value pinpointing the people or processes that were the inflection points of failure. I dislike the trend that no one bears any responsibility for water that has gone over the bridge, milk has been spilt and dreams have been dashed.

I prefer to look failure in the eye and get really granular with who got in the way. Of course, sometimes it’s just the woman (or man) in the mirror.  But, sometimes it was a friend, partner, boss, client, or subordinate who just made progress too hard.

This is a good time to ask:

  • who got in your way?
  • Who needs to be crossed off your holiday gift and email list?
  • Who needs to be reassigned and taken out of your collaboration circles or team?
  • Whose opinion needs to be unsolicited this coming year?
  • Who dropped the ball, took too much time and otherwise just didn’t perform?

If you are going to be an A player, you need to be with A players. You can be friends with everyone, but your closest circle needs to be red hot with motivation, aspirations, and the ability to work hard – especially when the road is rocky.

Take a quiet moment. Make your assessments. Use your judgment. Then decide what next year is going to be made of – including the people and processes on which you will depend.

Then give thanks you, get another year to do better and go bigger.

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