I recently read a great article about commitments written by Chris Freyteg. Freyteg suggests that “a resolution may be the act of resolving or deciding on a course of action, but a commitment can be far stronger, because it’s a specific pledge, promise or obligation.” The bottom line: Keep it simple and you’ll actually be able to add it your busy daily life.
Below are my top 5 commitments to myself and my business this year. What will yours be?
Be (and stay) healthy.
Let’s face it — there is only one you and you are needed. Eat clean, exercise often and get plenty of rest. Try to pack healthy snacks and lunches for your busy day. For instance, I bring a protein shake along with bananas and carrots to munch on throughout the work day. Also, make time in your schedule to get out on a run or even take a brisk walk during the day. A 30-minute walk can help relieve stress and tension. Meanwhile, a one-hour workout is only 4 percent of our day. In business, we are walking billboards for our company. It’s important that we look and feel good.
Put it on the calendar.
Start using a personal calendar to pencil in your daily, weekly and monthly schedule. Make sure to add personal time as well, including exercise, to your daily regimen. By putting it on the calendar, it is more likely to get done. Then prioritize your work day the night before.
You can only control you — the way you think and act. Be the best person you can be, and forget about what others think and do. Don’t sweat the small stuff. We spend too much time worrying over small issues or other people’s issues that it takes away from the time we could have spent on ourselves and on our companies. So, your business partner took credit for your idea. Is it really the end of the world? No, it’s not. In the big picture, it matters that the work was accomplished, not whose idea it was. I always ask myself, “In a month, will I remember this? In a year, will I be thinking about this very moment?” It’s fascinating how many times the answer is, “no”.
Make time to network.
When I say “network” I don’t mean social media, “online” networking. Nothing beats live face-to-face interaction. It’s important to build long lasting relationships because they are the bread and butter of success. The more people you connect with, the more opportunities. Start by attending chamber mixers and events — there is an event for everything. You can find events through Meetup.com or through your local Chamber of Commerce. Meanwhile, ask local business professionals where they network and join them.
Practice personal growth.
Why not stay away from the TV this year and substitute it with a book? I feel fortunate to have the luxury of reading books from self-made millionaires and entrepreneurs I admire. Entrepreneurship books give me the tools and resources needed to accomplish what I want. So, get started by working on yourself — because only you can make yourself successful. By learning more about your industry and business skills, you become an expert and continue to grow with new ideas and solutions. You also have more knowledge to use for conversations with clients and people you meet. Growth and development are instrumental to one’s success.
Put in the work — make the commitment — and it will pay off, trust me. Don’t be afraid to start with baby steps, either. I have found that true excellence is achieved by doing many, many small things extremely well. Be a person who does what you say you are going to do. Make a year-round commitment to your health, your relationships, and your personal growth — and business success will follow.
Nicole Smartt is the Vice President and co-owner of Star Staffing. She was awarded the Forty Under 40 award, recognizing business leaders under the age of 40. In addition, Nicole co-founded the Petaluma Young Professionals Network, an organization dedicated to helping young professionals strive in the business world.
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