I am really looking forward to February 1st.
On the approach to the big night of the year, I cast my mind back over several New Year’s Eve events and the habitual conversation about New Year’s Resolutions and thought ‘why do I always say the same thing about what I am hoping to achieve and more importantly, how come I never achieve it?’
So, as I tucked into my glass of champagne at midnight I made a decision, instead of making some grand statement about the usual wish list; wanting to get fit and healthy, losing weight, never eating rubbish food and totally giving up alcohol, you know the usual non-specific stuff we all say and never stick to, and inevitably end up mentally beating ourselves up for not sticking to, and of course, never achieving these goals, this year I was going to approach it differently.
Instead, I pondered the prospect of practising what I preach whenever I get asked to help the managers we coach on setting goals and targets at work. So that meant I needed to
- Keep it simple, focus on ‘one thing’ each day that will guarantee you success tomorrow and beyond
- Have short term ‘themes’ that you can build on and maintain
- Understand what and how you are measuring your success
- Ensure you see how your one theme fits into the ‘grand plan’ and finally
- Decide at the outset what will be the reward or consequence of not achieving your goal?
So I decided to give the ‘Dry January’ thing a go. My thinking was, it’s simple, I am not attempting to give anything else up in January so it is just ‘one thing’, it’s easy to measure and fits into my longer term goal of wanting to be more healthy. This combination of criteria always works in operational situations, so what could go wrong?? In summary, ‘Peer Pressure’!
Most of my fellow wine loving friends and colleagues thought it was a ridiculous idea ‘just give up wine in the week’ ‘you’ll never do that’ was their encouraging response to my grand announcement of my January quest. However, despite having been on several nights out with my prosecco pals, and experienced some, what would have been perfect nights in with a cosy bottle of red, I am very pleased to say I have done it and resisted the temptation.
So it worked, practicing what I preach was successful and I feel more healthy as a result. Now on to my February challenge and how I can build on the ‘Dry January’ theme, but I have to admit, I am looking forward to my reward on Sat 1st Feb – any ideas as to what that will be??
Emma Taylor, Principal Consultant