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Re-committing to Broken New Year’s Business Resolutions

January 22, 2013

Advice for Women Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses

The news reporter said, “Today is the most depressing day of the year, it’s when most people realize they have broken their New Year’s resolutions. Their hopes for a change are squashed within 22 days.” It’s tough to stay on course with a new habit whether it’s a personal or business habit. By nature, humans love familiarity and comfort so breaking out of poor routines can be a struggle.

I think one of the difficulties of being an entrepreneur is recognizing habits we need to change, committing to changing the habit, setting a goal and sticking with it. Business habits that might need to be changed could be conducting routine sales calls, maintaining an orderly receipt filing system, setting up customer service appointments or even keeping the coffee room clean. We know what we have to change so we set out each New Year with the best intentions to keep new promises.

If today is the day you are disappointed at how disorderly your desk has become 22 days into the year, disillusioned by the new social media marketing you were committed to perform starting January 1st and haven’t done or disheartened that you haven’t picked up the phone in 3 weeks to talk to a customer, stop and re-commit yourself today. Here are a few things you can do to get back on track:

* Realize a small slip-up by the 22nd day of January doesn’t mean the whole year of good intentions is shot to hell. By recognizing a small failure and re-committing yourself to correct the behavior for the next 22 days, is a good place to start. Make a note on your calendar to re-check your status on February 13th. Give yourself 22 more days to make the new habit stick.

* If you are a social person who likes support, ask a few entrepreneurs you know well to allow you to share your goals and struggles via email or skype when you need the support. There’s a reason alcoholics succeed by attending AA meetings. The support of others can keep us accountable so we adhere to our goals.

* Recognize progress when you sense it. If making weekly sales calls is a goal, pick a specific day of the week you’ll conduct sales calls. At the end of that day, treat yourself to something special – dinner out, a movie, a bottle of wine – anything to acknowledge you stuck to your plan. Positive reinforcement helps cement the good feeling of accomplishment in our mind for future success.

I’ve always loved the number 22 so I’m going to treat the 22nd of every month as a check point to make sure I’m staying on track with my yearly goals. 22I think if you do the same you’ll discover when December 22, 2013 rolls around you’ve achieved more New Year’s resolutions than you thought you would.

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