2016 was a tough year. Some of this was out of my hands, but much of it was down to me (mine to own). It was also a special year in many ways (as I share at the bottom of this post), but none of this matters because it’s past tense.
It’s part of me. It’s part of my journey. But it’s gone. 2017 is now. This is the year that matters. This is what I focus on today.
I am excited. I am daunted. I am energised and worried and every other feeling in-between. This is what it’s all about, because if you can’t feel alive with so many unknowns and opportunities ahead, when can you?
So with this in mind I’m dedicating my year to the following mantra:
DO THE WORK.
SOLVE THE PROBLEM.
EMBRACE THE CHALLENGE.
This is it. This is all. Each and every day I shall do the work (both in business and in life), solve the problem (however big or small), and embrace the challenge (especially if it’s daunting).
I’ve learned that there’s no secret to success. It’s as simple as committing to it every single day. I believe this mantra will help me, which is why I shall say them out loud (and in my head) several times each day.
But what about a goal or resolution or some other way to make this year count?
“I WILL end 2017 with back-to-back five-figure months.”
This may surprise you, seen as I’m someone who doesn’t value money all that much. When it comes to money, I want enough. I’d like to get to the point where I don’t think about it, period (more on this soon).
Regardless of my views, money does matter. I have responsibilities, a family, and a future. I don’t wish to survive, I desire to thrive.
2017 is a chance for me to step up to the big leagues. For some, a five-figure month is nothing. It’s tiny. It isn’t hard to achieve. I don’t care.
For me, right now… right here… it’s a challenge.
Beyond this, it represents stability. I want to rise to this, not simply save a bunch of launches or invoices so I can ‘tick’ this goal off the list. I want to grow each month, so that by the end of 2017 I’m stable and heading in a positive (and profitable) direction.
This is my one goal. This is my sole focus. So how will I do it, other than simply doing the work, solving the problem, and embracing the challenge?
My 3 words for 2017 are:
I learned this from Chris Brogan. Dedicate your year to 3 words. Have them be the anchor to keep you focussed each day. It’s a life-changer. Since learning about this approach, I’ve changed how I look at goals.
No list of SMART goals.
No dreamy aspirations and ego pleasers.
Just 3 words that help me stay focussed every single day.
I have a lot of self-doubt. I worry. I’m anxious. I give myself a hard time for too often. I worry that I’m not worthy.
But I am worthy, and I’m determined to make this the year where I finally fallen in love with myself (accept ME, give ME a break). But this doesn’t begin and end with loving myself. I must allow others to love me (my family, my friends). I must no longer fight it because I don’t feel worthy of it.
And I must love them. I must accept them. I must nurture relationships as well as create them. I must embrace my gernous self (both for others and for myself).
Of course, I must give myself reason to love myself. But so long as I place my best foot forward, I deserve this love. All I need do is commit to ME (my health, my wellbeing, my mind). Turn up each day and be my best self. Love myself. Let that be enough to motivate me to do the same tomorrow. Rinse and repeat. Let the magic happen.
OVE learned HIS.
I love to create. I love to strategise and come up with a plan. I love the idea of doing the work, solving the problem, and embracing the challenge… but I often fall at the first hurdle (the actual doing the work bit).
Not this year.
I’m proud of what I’ve created. Sure, I still have more to create, which is fine, but the time has come to promote my work; share these creations far-and-wide.
Not just some days. Not in bursts.
Every day. All of the time. I need to promote me. I need to promote The Successful Mistake.
Simple. No excuse. No rest.
Do the work, solve the problem, embrace the challenge!
OVE learned HIS.
The truth is, I’m an amateur.
I love to create. I’m comfortable at promoting (within reason). But I hate to sell.
I say that I’m not good at it, but the truth is that I’m scared. I’m scared that people like you will not value what I create. You will like it, maybe, but not enough to invest in it.
This is the truth. I don’t like it, and so I must change it.
As well as promote, I must sell. Selling isn’t wrong. It doesn’t have to be smarmy. To sell is to provide someone value, and to force them into investing (and therefore committing) to the act.
This doesn’t come easy to me. I must learn how to be a better sales-person, but beyond this, I must change how I see sales.
Because if I don’t sell in 2017, I will remain an amateur (and may remain this way forever).
he truth isOVE learned HIS.
I believe that if I Love, Promote, and Sell each day, I will achieve this year’s purpose (those back-to-back five-figure months)
I shall revisit these three words each day, and they will keep me anchored to the task at hand.
None of this will be easy. I will no-doubt falter.
But if I commit and remain anchored to these three glorious words, I’ll make 2017 a year to treasure, savour, and remember.
Which is great, but what about the bigger picture that extends beyond this year?
My definition of success is…
Much of this remains true, but I’ve learned a lot in the time that’s passed. I’ve evolved, and over the last few months I’ve realized that my definition of success has too. Which is why I would like to revisit it and tweak it a little:
My definition of success is to escape money’s daily burden. This means not worrying about having enough, of course, but to also not yearn for more. I simply wish to know (and appreciate) that I have enough, and as such, work on projects I believe create the greatest value (to me and to others), instead of the largest margins.
I am not the outcome. I am the effort that I put in, the value that I offer, and the blood I spill onto the page. Money keeps focus on the outcome. But like money, the outcome could always be greater; yet a greater outcome doesn’t necessarily lead to greater happiness, freedom, or success.
This is my success. I am the effort, not the outcome; I am the value I produce, not the money I make.
This is odd, I know.
On the one hand, I talk about not thinking about money, yet this year’s main focus surrounds five-figures worth of it.
There’s method in this madness, because I still have a toxic relationship with money. Money isn’t bad. It’s not wrong to want it, make it, or to have it. I wish to escape its shackles in the long-term because I believe it keeps me honed in on the outcome.
But this doesn’t make money unimportant.
I cannot keep running away from it. I need money in the same way everyone else needs it, but I don’t wish to think about it like so many millions do (either through worry, greed, or a mixture of both).
If I desire to escape its daily burden, I must face it head-on and smile at it (change how I see it and think about it).
So in 2017 I WILL have those back-to-back five-figure months. I will promote, and I will sell. Best of all, I will love myself throughout the good, the bad, and the ugly.
This is MY year.
I will do the work, I will solve the problem, and I will embrace the challenge each day.
I’m scared, excited, and every other feeling imaginable. Isn’t it wonderful?
But before we embrace 2017…
2016 was a tough year. Some of this was out of my hands, but much of it was down to me (mine to own). It was also a special year in many ways, so in a bid to appreciate what I have and to celebrate (and love) what I have achieved, here are a few of the highlights:
- My better half, Rosanna, was hit by a motorbike in May. It was a horendous ordeal, but we learned a lot and pulled through. I’m proud of her, I’m proud of me, and I’m proud of us.
- After four years, I finally published The Successful Mistake.
- Kid Turndog started school this year, and I’m so proud of the boy he both is, and is becoming.
- Rosanna, The Kid, and me had our first family trip together (it was a short getaway to York, and it was wonderful)
- I read a lot, learned a lot, and made a lot of personal strides forward in my quest to devloping ME
- I’ve grown a lot as a person, partner, and a father.
- I took control of my finances, and laid the foundations to make 2017 a year to remember
- I made it through another year. I’m breathing. The dream is still alive. I have a lot to be thankful for.