At the end of the calendar year, I often wish I could feel like I did as a student who has just completed a semester or grade level. Finishing school brought such a powerful sense of successful endeavor. You made it! You survived a tough class or boring teacher or required subject you didn’t really care about. Endings felt so good – no further worrying about that stuff.
For us business people, wouldn’t it feel great to reach the end of the year with similar sensational endings? In the business world, we are grateful for improved profit, new (and functioning) tech solution, or good riddance to a project we never liked anyway. Instead most of us face continuations of challenging task lists along with new initiatives that never seem to end or go away. There is never really an end, so there is no beginning.
My answer to this challenge is to search for actions I can take, big or small, to gain closure on the old year and welcome the new one. I know I’ll be in a better frame of mind to tackle the tough issues if I can eliminate some nagging tasks. Perhaps my list will suggest some ways you too can create your own sense of closure and moving on.
Clean up my contact lists
Even though I’m constantly updating my contacts, I make a concerted effort to synchronize and verify my contact data at year end. Now that I’m using so many programs to market, it is even more challenging to maintain every list. As they say, “the devil is in the details” so I spend hours scouring and updating contacts.
As I step through the first goal, I always find names I meant to stay in touch with or didn’t follow up with or folks who could use a virtual hug or personal hello. I take my time as I update and try to reach out as I go through the lists. It always pays off to re-connect and stay in touch.
Yes, I still have lots of paper files and I always downsize, toss, and store them at year end … or in January if I’m lagging. As well, before my final backup of the year, I clean up my computer files. Usually I find many misplaced files as well as reminders of tasks I need to get done. It is tedious, but why continue in a state of disorganization?
Spruce Up Work Area
This is not a big deal, but it sure feels cleansing. Not only do I give my work area a deep cleansing, I change or add something new like photos or flowers to keep me happy. Why sit at your desk all day and look at the same stuff? Give yourself some joy, I say.
Probably like you I can already see some challenges in the new year, so I will ramp up or draft some preliminary work so that I have a running start as events unfold. Avoid getting swamped by thinking ahead.
Even if I accomplish only part of this list, I know I will be calmer and more prepared for whatever lies ahead. I encourage you to create your own list of endings and beginnings to close out the old and prepare for the new.
Happy New Year 2015!