December is a tough month for me. Maybe it’s the shorter days, increased sugar, colderweather, and over-emphasis on stuff buying that leaves me in this mood. Bruce Springsteen’s “Darkness on the Edge of Town” starts playing in my head. This drives my wife crazy since she is used to me being the overly optimistic person in the house . [Note to file, consistency of attitude more important than degree of attitude]. I know that January is always better because I focus on my goals and New Year resolutions.
One month is a long time to be in a funk. I have decided to think a little outside the box. I have shifted my New Year’s resolutions/goals to December. After all, if Christmas ads can appear before Thanksgiving and Black Friday begins on Thanksgiving, why not jumpstart my annual goals?
As a result of this approach, several positive results have occurred. First, I am easier to get along with at work and home. If that alone is the only result, the change was worth it, big time. But wait, there’s more….
My frustration level has gone down and my productivity up. The frustration that grew out of wondering why I had not accomplished more during an atmosphere of parties and more parties has been replaced by a renewed focus on what I will be accomplishing going forward. And the time I spent trying to reach people to complete goals or move projects forward is better spent planning the details of my goals. Most people aren’t available physically or mentally the last three weeks of the December. By getting most of my planning done this month I will hit January already in gear. It gets better…
To my way of thinking, this is adding a month onto my year. I set my goals for the entire next year. Next I schedule myself to complete all the goals by mid-November, allowing time for review and drafting of the next year’s plan before Thanksgiving. Consequently, not only have Imoved my execution of goals up a month, I have raised my productivity in the slowest month of my year.
So when others are slowing down, go ahead and speed up your planning. Add goal achievement to your Thanksgiving blessings and let improved productivity be the gift you give yourself each Christmas.