By Maryann Baldwin, The Works Business Coach and SBDC Counselor
It's one thing to suggest that we can “Be More in ‘24,” as we approach the new year; it’s another thing to actually live that commitment. The fresh start we feel with the First Day of the new year quickly slips away as the rhythm of everyday life kicks back into gear after the holidays.
What can we do to capture that same fresh-start-feeling we experience with New Year’s Day and put it to work with each new week? Here are a few suggestions to consider:
As you might do at the end of a year, consciously close each week with a rose/bud/thorn reflection to capture the wins and acknowledge what fell short. What does this mean? Consider each of these experiences at the end of each week:
Your Rose: Capture a moment that reflects what you are working to accomplish.
Your Bud: What happened that reflects your efforts, but still requires some effort?
Your Thorn: Life isn’t perfect - what do you wish you might have done differently and can learn from going forward?
With this reflection, also take time to close out each week on Friday afternoons - it allows you to go into your weekend with a sense of calm, and it gives you an opportunity to embrace a new week on Monday with the same sense of renewal that comes with a new year. Truly take the weekend off to refuel and re-energize and hit Monday morning with a fresh start because you gave the week closure on Friday.
What does it mean to close out the week? Go through your calendar of events from the current week and make sure you've captured everything you committed to in your meetings and encounters with others. If you missed anything, make sure you add the follow up to an up coming day on your calendar, or to the appropriate to-do list or task manager.
Your final ritual to help you start each week like New Year’s Day, is to review your goals, intentions and calendar for the coming week and recommit. Make sure you time-block some space for a couple of tasks that move you closer to your larger goals, some “me time” to reset and rest, and confirm you have everything in place for all your upcoming commitments and appointments. Ten to fifteen minutes on Friday afternoon can help you avoid any last minute surprises, and can serve as a refresher about the why behind your intentions for the year. Just like you set intentions for the new year, do the same for the next new week.
You may not celebrate the new week with hats and horns as we often do for the new year, but you can take some time to toast yourself and your goals and stay committed to the new week with the same kind of excitement and resolve. Happy New Year, Happy New Week, here’s to your weekly First Day!