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HAPPY NEW YEAR

Fools Rush In  

January, for many, is like the human cannonball being launched from zero to seventy miles per hour in an instant. The year starts fast with a frenzy of emails, deadlines, new projects, and travel. By the time we catch our breath it's Groundhog's day, and we're already behind on our priorities.
 
But not this year, right! Prevent the year from getting away from you at the outset, by setting aside time to think and plan for success. Crazy, I know-set aside time to think? Yes. Look ahead to the horizon of 2016 and determine what will excite you and what areas of focus deserve your attention and effort.
 
The most effective leaders I've worked with think of their passions in both the success of their business and personal efforts, recognizing that you don't have a personal life and a professional life, but one life. Done well, you'll be intentional about how you intend to maximize your success in the coming year. Ask yourself what do you want to be different in 2016? How will you know if you are on the right track in March, June, and September? Why are these things important and what resources do you need?
 
There is no magic about doing this in January; you can do it at anytime though January provides a sort of freshness with new calendars. If you only set New Years Resolutions, odds are they won't stick. But being thoughtful about what you want 2016 to look like, will allow you to shape the year, instead of the year simply happening to you or your team.
 
And for those of you who do set resolutions, particularly in the area of improving as leaders, you may find value in my Harvard Business Review article from a few years back, The Leadership Resolutions That Work Best. An oldie but a goodie.


 
A slice of Life balance             

Star Wars: The Force Awakens premiered in December with great fanfare. As a lifelong fan of the saga, I attended with my family on opening night and it was a blast. There was great excitement in the air while we waited in line and in the theater in anticipation of the start. When the movie started the theater was ecstatic. Star Wars fan or not, we could all use more of that kind of joy. It's energizing. So commit to finding out where you can experience that kind of excitement with more frequency; a sporting event, a concert, whatever it is that allows you to get lost in the moment, and do it.
 
And for those of you who share my affinity for Star Wars, you may enjoy the article I wrote for Forbes last month titled, Seven Executive Leadership Lessons In Honor Of Star Wars Episode VII. I originally wrote a draft of this for my own enjoyment, but an editor encouraged me to revise it and have it published, so hope you find it entertaining and useful.



Future Content
 
In the coming month I'll have new designs for all things web related, which includes this newsletter. Along with a new look, I'm interested in what topics or challenges you are facing that you would like me to cover in future newsletters. Reply to this email or send me a separate note by clicking here. I'd be delighted to hear from you.