The three words that will shape my 2012 goals
By Suzi Dafnis
On 1 January US time, Chris Brogan (co-author of bestseller Trust Agents and author of new book Google+ for Business) posted this post on his blog: My 3 Words for 2012. When I saw Chris's post I remembered he'd done something similar a year earlier. So, perhaps when I decided I'd start my goal setting by determining what the overriding themes for my goals would be - something was being triggered from what I'd read a year earlier.
I'm a bit of a serial goal setter. I'm good at setting goals and I understand how to do it in order to get a level of success.
However, where i get tripped up is that I tend to go all over the place with some goals and I tend to set too many goals and then stress that I am not achieving them all. Sometimes the bigger, most important goals end up being reset year after year after making some progress, but falling a little short, the year before. Can you relate?
So, this year I decided to have a key word or two under which all goals and dreams for the year would fit. These words would be my guiding principles and would apply to any goal that I set.
The words I chose are DISCIPLINE and COURAGE.
I don't have negative connotations for the word discipline. It doesn't remind me of school or parents. To me it means doing the work that needs to be done to get something executed or completed. I'm disciplined about getting to the gym four times a week. I'm disciplined about creating content for our podcast series and through webinars. I'm disciplined around team meetings. I'm disciplined about a lot of things.
The challenge for me is to apply discipline to the 'big-rocks' — the really big goals that need to be broken down to manageable chunks and then worked on day in and day out. The things with longer time-frames take the most discipline and are where my focus will be this year.
Training and Fitness
I've committed to run the New York City Half-Marathon in March. (Yikesy yikes!). So, discipline will mean getting myself running again, following a training program, dropping the excess kilos I've picked up and staying true to a paleo/zone-ish kind of diet free of grains and sugars. (I just have to commit to a start date for the food regime - which I will do this week.)
It's been two years since my last long run and being fitter and stronger is important for me in 2012. It's going to take some discipline.
Discipline at WORK
It's at work that I need to take this principle of discipline most to heart. Discipline at work means taking time out to plan, design, think, study, research, create, envision, strategise. It means consciously choosing what to say no to and what to say yes to and aligning decisions to big goals and long-term gains.
And, discipline at work means being meticulous about fulfilling my role as the leader of my organisation instead of falling into doing a myriad of to-dos that could be leveraged.
The ability to do something that frightens me is important to me as I aim higher and higher with my goals.
I'm not shy of trying new things or venturing out (in fact I pride myself on being part of an innovative organisation) but, like anyone, I have areas where I flinch and hold myself back.
Courage escapes me when I attempt to give up a favourite food (or drink) for an extended length of time. In the past courage seemed to evaporate when I committed to train harder, or to get that first stupid muscle-up or lift that heavy weight at the gym.
Courage, and moving towards that which makes me feel uncomfortable, is exactly what's required to confront my physical goals and aspirations.
Courage is also what is needed to stop doing that something that 'we've always done' at work and changing a business model not knowing if the new model has any chance of success. Courage and courageous behaviour is what I need to embrace to go out and meet the people and create the alliances that are required for my next level of development as a business owner.
The 3rd Word Just Came to Me
I've set goals for my health and fitness, fun and adventure, relationships, study, business etc. I'm yet to break them down into 3-month blocks and then itemise the steps to each one (a formula that works well for me). But, that'll be the easy part. The more difficult part for me will be to keep pulling myself out of the list of goals and to staying focused on the key words/ themes.
But, I'm committed.
Following Chris Brogan's model I choose COMMITMENT as my 3rd word. And, so it is. The third word is Commitment.
i.e. vow, promise, pledge, oath; contract, pact, deal; decision, resolution.
I commit and am dedicated to doing that which must be done regardless of how uncomfortable I feel in the process.
I think the three words actually work well together:
I invite you to:
a) read Chris Brogan's post (and subscribe to his newsletter). His posts are thoughtful and quite heart-open
b) to download and read Julien Smith's book - The Flinch (It's free and available from Amazon).
And, I encourage you to set the themes or words that will guide you to fulfil your goals this year.
My best wishes to you for a truly awesome 2012.
P.S. A thanks for Chris Brogan for the inspiration to write this post.