As we close in on the final days of the final month of the year, most people begin to eagerly anticipate the new year. Symbolically viewed as a fresh start, it is common to dream of what the year will hold in store. Everyone will meet new milestones to some degree. Most people will experience positive milestones such as a baby being added to their family, buying their first house, or getting a promotion. Unfortunately many people will also face hardships such as getting themselves into debt or losing their job. Hardships are bound to happen, but to what degree do we control our positive milestones?
If you think about it, our careers typically determine many other aspects of our lives. How much time we spend at our job determines things like how much free time we have left to divide between quality time with family, or how much time we have available to take care of our health. How much money we make determines where we can afford to live and whether we struggle or can live comfortably. Not to mention the levels of stress or happiness our jobs produce for us significantly affects our mental health- and our mental health affects every single aspect of our lives. Because of this notion, many people often dream of running their own business so they can truly create their own destiny. Sound familiar? This new year is the time to stop waking yourself up from this dream and start living it.
No thanks, making New Year resolutions never works for me…
Statistically speaking, New Year resolutions don’t work. By the end of January only about 40% of people are still working towards their resolutions. At the end of the year, only about EIGHT per cent of people have followed through with their resolutions. If you are the gambling kind, I wouldn’t place bets on making a life change through a resolution.
That’s why this year we are shifting our focus away from resolutions. You had a revelation that you want to turn your dream job into reality. If you were making a resolution you would typically let your excitement build and then determine in your mind you will make that happen this new year. Then before you know it July is here, and you haven’t made any progress towards your resolution. But this year we are skipping resolutions and setting actual goals. Goals that can be managed and have steps to actually be followed through. This year, take your dream of having your own business and actually set it into action.
Why goals and not resolutions?
A resolution is formed from an emotion. This may be why, too often, resolutions are not followed through. You can firmly decide to do something, but if you have no steps or plan in place to do what you have determined to do, you likely will not get very far. Hence the high turn over rate in New Year resolutions.
“Goal: the object of a person’s ambition or effort; an aim or desired result”
A goal is a destination created from a resolution. A goal is more of a definitive marker of success. Because a resolution is a decision, there are no real check points to determine progress, let alone success. By taking your feeling of determination to the next level and setting measurable goals, you will be able to evaluate your journey of making your dream of owning your own business a success.
Resolutions are difficult to be held accountable for. Friends and family can occasionally ask how your journey in your resolution is going, but that is likely just to stir emotions and maybe give you a little boost to actually start towards your resolution. A goal, on the other hand, provides ample opportunity for accountability. By setting goals that are measurable, when an acquaintance asks how your goals are coming along, you can give them specifics of where you stand in progress. Others who are helping you towards achievement will know how much effort still needs to be put in and how much action still needs to be taken.
Do I need someone to hold me accountable?
Our pride often leads us to want to be able to say “I did this all on my own.” But realistically we all need someone on our side who understands what we are going through and the effort it takes to get us where we are going. If you are starting a business, it is great to have friends and family on your side for moral and even financial support. However, if they do not have experience in starting or owning a business, then it may seem like you still do not truly have anyone to help you through the trials you will face. For true accountability you will want someone who understands the battles of starting your own business- someone who has created businesses and helped others do the same, like a business coach.
Where do I start?
The most reliable direction to take your new goals in the new year is to find expert help- in this case a business coach. It doesn’t matter what stage of your plan you are in, a business coach can guide you the rest of the way.
The best practice is to generate your own business idea. (Are you stuck at that stage? Check out some of the top business ideas for 2022) Once you have an idea of the type of business you want to begin, you can expand on your goals, or contact a business coach now. A business coach working with you from the very beginning can help you set realistic and achievable goals, as well as help you list out goals that you may not have thought about.
Having a business coach by your side through the whole process will provide accountability to hold you to your goals. You will be able to map out a clear idea of what it will take in order to actually begin your business instead of continuing to only dream about it with determination to make it happen. So with the new year on the horizon, take advantage of the ‘fresh new start’ mind set and chase your dreams. Let the new year set the precedent for your new life and, with the help of a business coach, turn your dreams into reality.