Wednesday, January 16, 2013


I both look forward to and dread the arrival of the New Year.  Initially I look forward to catching up and celebrating with loved ones, counting down to midnight and the excitement about the year ahead, however, hovering in the background is the prospect of reflecting back on my often failure to achieve last year's resolution and the dread of setting a new one.

This year is going to be different!  Over the Christmas break I had a chance to reread ‘Tuesday’s with Morrie‘ by Mitch Albom.  It’s a wonderful book that had originally been given to me by my brother in a time when I needed inspiration. It's full of wise words from Mitch’s old professor Morrie Schwartz.

Every time I read this book a different quote speaks to me and this time it was this one:

“So many people walk around with a meaningless life. They seem half-asleep, even when they're busy doing things they think are important. This is because they're chasing the wrong things. The way you get meaning into your life is to devote yourself to loving others, devote yourself to your community around you, and devote yourself to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning.” (p.42)

The idea of ‘devoting myself to loving others, the community around me and to creating something that gives me purpose and meaning’ sounded to me like a perfect New Year's resolution.  It wasn’t going to be about loosing the weight I’d recently gained or getting fit by going to the gym 3 times a week, it was going to be about something deeper and more meaningful.

Now no resolution is going to be achieved without setting goals, again something my brother had taught me, so I am in the process of breaking down 2013 into individual months, beside each month I’m placing a goal, which again I break down into smaller tasks and aligning these against each individual week, so that I know exactly how I am going to reach my goal of keeping my New Year's resolution.

My challenge to you is to create your own New Year's resolution for work!  Find your own inspiration to take you past the mundane to something inspirational.  Are you able to discuss developing a goal as a team?  Look at pushing your boundaries, taking on what Carol Dweck calls a ‘growth mindset’.  

"Fixed mindset people believe their basic qualities, like their intelligence or talent, are simply fixed traits. They spend their time documenting their intelligence or talent instead of developing them. They also believe that talent alone creates success—without effort. They’re wrong.

Growth mindset people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work—brains and talent are just the starting point. This view creates a love of learning and a resilience that is essential for great accomplishment. Virtually all great people have had these qualities." (Quote from,  Mindset: The New Psychology of Success (2006) Ballantine Books)

Challenge YOURSELF!  Step outside YOUR comfort zone!  Look past just focusing on YOURSELF, then make YOUR plan!  

  I’d like to finish this blog with some more Morrie wisdom.

“As you grow, you learn more. If you stayed as ignorant as you were at twenty-two, you'd always be twenty-two. Aging is not just decay, you know. It's growth. It's more than the negative that you're going to die, it's the positive that you understand you're going to die, and that you live a better life because of it.” (p.117)

Happy New Year