If you’re anything like me, the festive break is nothing more than a distant memory… another year gone but another great year to look forward to.
In times gone by I’d always start the New Year with a fresh impetus for clean eating, healthy living and striving to achieve more in my personal life than ever before.
But this year is different. This year I’ve resolved to make NO New Year’s resolutions. But this doesn’t mean I’m starting 2017 with a negative mindset. The very opposite in fact. Because instead of making promises that have been sparked by the end of a year, I’m making a commitment to continuous improvement – a positive cycle of reflection, feedback and action – which has no start date, and no end date.
This approach is something that I’ve practised in my professional life for a long time. It’s also a methodology which I encourage all entrepreneurs, start-ups and business owners to adopt. Deadlines have an important and positive role to play commercially, but in my experience they can have the opposite effect when it comes to evaluating personal performance in business.
So with that in mind, here’s my top tips for creating a positive cycle for personal and professional development:
- Keep a daily diary – record three things you have done exceptionally and three things you would like to improve, including the ‘how’. Read this diary weekly to keep your goals front of mind (without setting a deadline for ‘completing’ any of them – it’s ongoing, remember)
- Find a soundboard – having someone to chat things through with and who will give you honest feedback is invaluable. Try and find someone who only knows you professionally and not personally and make time to talk to them regularly.
- Be honest with yourself – we can be our own worst enemies and fiercest critics. Remember not to be too harsh on yourself when appraising performance or how you could have handled a situation. It’s much better to be honest.
What do you think about New Year’s resolutions? Do you already actively practise continuous evaluation and appraisal in your professional life? Would love to hear your thoughts on all of these – feel free to share on any of my social channels below.