This Time Next Year

Ahhhh, the New Year. Feel’s fresh doesn’t it? Full of resolutions, promises and excitement.

The number of people that start off on Jan 1st with dreams of making £10 million by March or shedding 4 stone by February never fails to amaze me. Get real.

If there’s one thing I’ve learnt along the way, it’s to set measurable but realistic goals. Goals which, when you achieve them spur you on to achieve the next one – like getting an extra 100 readers on your Blog by June, and then converting just 5% of those readers into paying clients by the end of September.

January 1st is just a date. Like February 21st or April 9th. Don’t feel pressured into thinking you have to decide on your goals and aspirations at the start each calendar year like everyone else. Your plan is your plan for a reason – it can start anytime. If you want to change something in your life, it doesn’t matter when you start planning for it – what matters is when you achieve it.

Busy Being Busy

Leave her, she’s busy – course she is .. “Busy being busy” more like. Ever noticed when someone simply ignores what really needs to be done and looks for something to react or respond to?

E-mails, Twitter, Facebook – admit it, how often do you spend your time checking? How many times do you look for new texts on your phone, even though it’s not even beeped?

We are all guilty of it – spending time on the pointless alternative – something to distract us from taking initiative. The comfort zone has its name, well because it’s comfortable! How often are you spending time in your comfort zone? Busy responding to a tender you’ll never win, simply because you don’t want to pick up the phone and speak with a real prospect? Spending time buying and building servers to host your new application, even though you actually have no customers or have any clue how to obtain any?
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We’ve Got You Now

When I was 22, I was back working for IBM for the second time and I was having a ball. I was working with a great team, learning new stuff daily, and feeling I was really part of something.

Eighteen months later, everything changed. I was complacent. Everything now appeared like a daily grind. I had a new, uninspiring boss and my work had become repetitive.

It was around this time that I had just bought my first house. I was very proud having accomplished this at such a young age; however I felt I was slowly getting drawn onto the treadmill. On hearing the news, my boss came to congratulate me – “that’s it, we’ve got you now” he beamed. I thought for a second. Was this it? Because I’m now a home owner with responsibilities, I no longer have options?
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Remember as a kid when you’ll do anything to get what you want? Feelings of embarrassment don’t even feature? When I was around seven years old, I desperately wanted a hamster. All my friends had them. They were cool and I was the odd one out.

I settled on the idea of a sit-in protest to convince my parents to buy me one. I locked myself in the family bathroom (we only had one) until they backed down and said yes. I even roped my sister in to pass me biscuits under the door to keep hunger at bay. I can’t recall exactly how many hours I was in there, but it worked. I got my first hamster.

As we get older, it’s not uncommon to lose that die-hard belief in achieving your goals; too many knock-backs, a crappy boss, prospects that won’t take your call. My advice? Keep focused. If you truly believe in what you are doing then it will show. We had plenty of obstacles to overcome when building our business, but with each one you learn.

Don’t lose momentum. Treat each no as the journey to a yes.