It’s a strange thing New Year. It’s true – of course – that one year ends and another one starts. It’s also true that many of us have opportunity to take time off between Christmas and New Year, and therefore we have a feeling that we are starting again when we go back to work or school. But the extent of focus on the start of a New Year still feels a bit strange.
The good news, though, is that I did indeed have two wonderful weeks at home with my family. I worked for a day or two here or there, but most of my time was family and friends time…which felt just great…and was exactly what I needed. We did lots of things but we also did no things. We spent lots of time together and I also had some time to think. We relaxed and rewound.
But since New Year Day, I have been asked many times about my 2015 resolutions. And this is the aspect that bemuses me. Not the fact that people ask – that is only ever a sign that people care enough to ask. No…it’s more the fact that we all – me included – seem to have this belief that just because the year changes, we have to identify some big (and new) things to achieve. Does January 1 really merit this focus?
When I think about 2015 I can clearly see some very important dates – both personal and business. Business wise there is a date in 2015 when the Big Deal will close and my current company will become part of a different company. I don’t really know for sure what will happen from that date, but I do know things will change…there will be an impact on me and what I do. It will be amazing and – likely as not – it will also be more complicated. But it will definitely be real.
My son will leave school in 2015. It is his time. He is working very hard and very well and he knows what he wants to do and where he wants to go. The day he leaves home and goes to University will be a major date for the whole family. We will be so pleased for him and so proud of him…both our children away at University. We don’t really know for sure what that date will lead to, but we do know things will change…there will be an impact on us and what we do together. It will be amazing and – likely as not – it will also be more complicated. But it will definitely be real.
These are just two of my own specific dates and events that I know will happen in 2015. I haven’t got goals or resolutions about them. But I know that they are moments that will be of more importance and of more impact to me than January 1.
On the other hand, I do recognise that the calendar year tends to drive a lot of business related goals. Most organisations and businesses report their performance data annually – a cycle that inevitably leads to work related annual objectives. There is some sense in this…although sometimes that cycle of annual goals can become all consuming.
And whether value justifies effort…I am less sure. After all, it is actions we take that influence results…results that are measured by goals. Perhaps we would all benefit from a different balance of focus between measurable goals and less tangible actions.
Maybe that’s an idea for something different I will do…I will think more about what I do, and why, and less about the outcome…