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10 Ways To Kick Start Your New Year

December 14, 2011

You have to love a New Year. It means you can start afresh, change your wayward habits and create new stretch goals for you and your business.

It is also a great time for reflection and to celebrate all the successes and failures of the year that is now behind you. You can take through the things you did well into the New Year, and leave behind the screwups (but not the lessons learned).

If you haven’t already, I suggest you take time out for yourself to write down what you want your 2012 to look like in every way, shape and form possible.

As the experts say, if you don’t know where you’re going how will you know how to get there?  The same is true for what you envisage for yourself – the clearer you can get, the more realistic it will be, and the more likely it will happen.

To ensure your 2012 is truly exceptional, here are the top 10 things you can start doing now:

1. Expect the best for yourself. There’s nothing selfish in wanting to live the best possible life. Set your sights high, push yourself and always keep the big picture in mind. You’re going to need a fair amount of discipline to stay focused and achieve a life that you love, that you’re passionate about and that makes you happy. You know it’ll be worth it!

2. Love your gorgeous self. The above can’t be achieved if you don’t appreciate yourself, warts and all. You are probably your own toughest critic, so don’t forget to  let up on myself once and while and celebrate your achievements. Congratulate yourself during the year when you’re making great progress. Take time out to treat yourself each time you reach a milestone.

3. Have a grand vision for your business. Let’s face it 2011 was a tough year for anyone in business. 2012 can only get better so it’s time to envision the success your business will have in the New Year, the growth it will experience and the traction you’ll make through consistent and concerted effort in the right places. Keep that picture in your mind and solidify it on a daily basis through whatever works for you – vision boards, written statements, weekly progress sheets or constructive team meetings.

4. Surround yourself with positivity. No matter what, stay positive.  Just stick to your company’s vision and think positive. Remember that problems don’t last long and having an optimistic outlook will get you through the toughest times. If you can’t muster it yourself, then turn to your support network of your best friends, mentors and advisors. Learn to let other people help you.

5. Plan ahead. It is always best to have a clear plan in anything you do in life, especially in business. Better yet you should aim to have a plan A and a plan B for those times when things just aren’t working out. Flexibility and acting decisively on changes in your business landscape are key to success. Being flexible is more important than rigid plans set in stone. Life happens and you need to be able to react to make the most of it.

6. Bridge the gap. A new year is also a year to re-connect with contacts and to start afresh with previous business relationships that may have gone sour. Learn to forgive. If you had a client or customer interaction that ended on a bad note then get in touch and ask how they are doing. Conduct business with an open heart and mind. It’s the best way forward for everyone.

7. Socialize more. Get out and experience the world outside of your comfort zone, known as your office. Meet new people and exchange business cards with them. Who knows, that new acquaintance might be your next loyal client or future business collaboration. It invigorates your soul to meet with like-minded people and to learn from them. Don’t forget to pick up the phone and talk instead of just tweeting or emailing!

8. Become trendy. Study the market and visualize what your target market may need or be interested in for the coming year. Read up on daily basis about emerging trends in your business space so you can stay ahead of the game, and prepare for your next move towards making your business more profitable. Around this time of the year you’ll see a lot of great articles on what to expect in 2012. Make sure you read them.

9. Share your fortunes. Become a shining example of corporate social responsibility. Plan an activity where your company can contribute and help the less fortunate members of the community. It doesn’t have to be a grand party that needs to be publicized. A simple act of donating to an organization that’s making a difference is enough to show you care.

10. Relax and enjoy life. It’s easy to say this when you’re on holiday but it really won’t hurt if let yourself enjoy yourself with mini breaks throughout the year. Yes, as entrepreneurs we tend to love our business and become addicted to it, but taking a break to recharge will do you and your business wonders.

Natalie Sisson is a Suitcase Entrepreneur and Adventurer who travels the world, living out of her suitcase and running her online business from anywhere. She shows others how to do the same and create their ultimate lifestyle business through using social media, online tools and outsourcing.

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