Many of the circumstances that existed before the Christmas break will still be the same now the New Year is getting underway. For example –
- You’ll probably be interacting with the same people
- The business will face many of the same opportunities and challenges
- You will react in the same way
Old habits die hard!
That makes it really easy to feel as though nothing has changed. You’ll get dragged back into the same old things. There’s a cynical saying that goes, ‘Same s**t, different day’.
All those wonderful plans you’ve been thinking about, all the great things you were planning to do at the start of the New Year are likely to get overwhelmed by the wave of history. You get dragged back into day-to-day battles and your plans sit in the drawer gathering dust.
In a year’s time, you’ll probably reflect on how little progress you’ve made towards your goals and feel really frustrated.
Or else you can take proactive steps today to break with the past, leave all those old habits behind and focus on new plans and opportunities.
To do this is easier said than done – but that’s usually true of anything worthwhile!
A tip that will help – and can be applied to any change project – is to set short-term goals and deadlines. These will act as milestones or staging posts towards your longer-term plan.
Hold frequent progress meetings. Try to avoid calling them ‘review’ meetings, as that tends to imply you’re reviewing what has happened, rather than focusing on the development of what has yet to happen.
Remind everyone involved that you can’t change the past. You can, and should, learn from the past; but change only happens by looking to the future.