Happy New Year!
Another year is in the books, a new one begins. I can honestly say it’s my least favorite holiday. I’m just not in to celebrating something we don’t know about. What does the year ahead hold in store for us, or are we celebrating the ending of the past year? I guess it’s good when you make it to a new year and that deserves some thanks and appreciation.
I like routine and midseason form. A new year to me is the beginning of a new season and maybe it’s my years of coaching, but I’m always more comfortable a few games in, when I know how my team is playing and know the obstacles that need to be overcome. A change in the calendar year represents the beginning of a new season both at home and in business. This can provide an opportunity for changing for the good and bettering yourself in both aspects. I use this philosophy to overcome my feelings about the New Year and what is ahead. You can always improve at whatever you set your mind to and get better, don’t ever look back or someone will be gaining on you. Mr. Webb instilled these thoughts in my head.
While all the talk is about New Year’s resolutions – which usually means lose weight or quit a habit – here are my thoughts on how to make yourself better for the new year. Make a list of three items:
First, take an honest look at yourself as a person. How can you improve as a husband or wife, a parent or as a member of your family? Be honest, and if you can’t, ask your spouse or whoever is closest to you. They will usually tell you the truth. Don’t be offended or hurt; after all we all have flaws.
Maybe it’s patience and understanding you need to work on, or being more concerned about others instead of yourself. One of my faults is listening. I know Michelle is laughing as she reads this. She thinks I have selective hearing. I know this is something I need to work on. I often move on in thought to the next subject and unintentionally ‘tune out’ who is speaking. I will improve on this for Michelle. The folks in the office are laughing at this – they think I am set in my ways.
Pick one thing to improve on that affects the folks you love. Write it down. For me – I will listen and not have selective hearing. Then put this on a note card as a reminder and put it somewhere you will see it every day – self-improvement by visual representation. You may add to the reminder the person or people you want to make this change for. I will be more patient with my kids, or I will tell my wife/husband how much they are appreciated and not complain about their cooking.
It will take effort and won’t happen overnight. You will change if you want to and will fall back to the same old if you allow yourself to.
Next thing on your note card – pick one thing you can do better at in the workplace. Again, honesty is required and if you need help, ask your supervisor. Again, don’t be offended by the answer you receive.
Maybe it’s punctuality or following instruction, or it might be as simple as not leaving your desk looking like a tornado just hit. My desk often looks like this; Steph, my Editor and right-hand person, is often amazed how I am able to find things. “Good organization,” I tell her. I know where everything is.
That sounds good, but I’m sure she knows that I am telling her an ‘Obama’ you know – a little fib that seems insignificant until you have a problem with that stretch of the truth.
Work on this item each and every day. Be on time, or be more concerned about your job than Facebook. In my case I will try to organize my desk before leaving each evening. Steph will appreciate this because I failed to mention that when I can’t find something she’s the first person I ask.
Last thing on my simple list of three – community. What do you need to improve on at your house of worship, or as coach of your son or daughter’s team? Maybe you head up a non-profit organization – you get the idea.
Again, it could be patience or understanding. One thing I think that is often overlooked is communication. Don’t expect that seven-year-old to know when practice is – send an e-schedule home to the parents, or pass out old fashioned schedules and make sure you hand it to a parent. In my haste as a coach to move on to the next item on my practice list, I would often not explain things thoroughly enough. Communicate, take the time to explain and make sure those who are listening understand. Be specific and to the point.
If you’re the leader of an organization or place of worship, maybe it’s appreciating understanding that all that are supporting you are volunteers. Please don’t ask folks to put a project or fundraiser ahead of their family or job. Be thankful for what each individual can give and remember they are volunteering.
Now that you have a list of these things you can improve upon for the New Year, put that note or reminder where you can view is every day and challenge yourself to change. Don’t let complacency prevent you from reaching your goals and making improvements in your life. Oh, by the way, losing weight and kicking that chewing habit are important, but don’t lose track of what really makes you who you are.
Good luck, I’m off to clean my desk now.
Happy New Year from all of us at Webb Weekly. Please ring in 2014 in a safe and responsible way. Enjoy that sauerkraut and pork for good luck and please don’t spend too much time watching all those bowl games. Get out and enjoy winter in Pennsylvania.