Inspired by the likes of Chris Brogan, C.C. Chapman and Christopher Penn, I have given in to New Year resolutions this year and made my three word “list”. Why three words? Well, as the concept goes, we all have a vision of where we’d like to be at the end of one year. And most of us make goals and plans and to-do lists on a frequent basis to drive us towards those plans. But often what we miss identifying amidst the daily hustle is the bigger picture. The part that’s even bigger than our vision for the year. Enter the “3 words” mantra.
The idea is to come up with 3 words that will drive you towards your vision. So for example if my vision for 2013 is to be proactive, what 3 words should I keep in mind throughout the year that will help keep me focused on achieving this? So the 3 words concept essentially lays down your story for the year. It provides legs to your vision. It provides the basis on which to formulate your vision, goals, tasks and to-do lists.
So with all that said, here are my 3 words for 2013 along with some detail on what I mean by each.
My one big mistake of 2012 was to plan things almost oblivious to the fact that I was pregnant during the first half of the year and taking care of a newborn the second half of the year. Quite stupidly (in retrospect) I decided I wanted to get a whole lot of work done forgetting that its next to impossible to work alongside a baby’s demanding schedule. Yes well, lesson learnt. Now that my older daughter is in school for 4 hours and the baby is past the newborn phase, its time to re-evaluate how much I can realistically get done this year. I am open to the possibility of hiring some extra help since I know that as the baby grows, she will only want (nay, demand!) more attention. I am also going to be segmenting my time more consciously, and being more consistent with important tasks and their follow through. I know that a dash of realism to my workload, commitments and ambitions would spare me the end of year feeling of not getting enough done.
My brain at any given time is like a boiling pot overflowing with its contents. I am literally never short of ideas of what I want to do; however, I am falling behind on execution. I have way too many plans and not enough actionable steps. For example, right now I have 4 neglected websites, 2 books in writing, 1 video series in planning mode, etc. I need to give myself an end-date for all my current on-going projects before starting new ones. And I have to be able to do that keeping point #1 above in mind – without realistic time-frames, I might as well give up now! So less talk , more action is one of my mantras for 2013. Some of the ways I intend to achieve this to get to work right after I open the laptop (instead of procrastinating on Twitter for half an hour). I also intend to set a timer to be able to work in 20 minute slots. My baby is my default timer right now, but I should like to further condition myself to work in 20 minute concentration bursts – it’s even highly recommended by productivity experts to take short and frequent breaks and since the WAHM lifestyle makes this mandatory, might as well do it right!
And that brings me to my third word – social. An oft-repeated phrase in my family is one said inadvertently by a cousin: “I have friends – I just don’t meet them!” Jokes aside though, most of my friends from school and college don’t really get what I go on about all day – namely, business, marketing, working from home, social media, alternative parenting, entrepreneurship and the like. Most of my newer friends have been made in the course of my professional life and since I work from home, they can mostly be categorized as virtual friends. It is these friends – with whom I can theoretically talk with for hours on all my favorite subjects – that I need to go to the next level of friendship with. This might sound ridiculous to an extrovert to whom this comes easily and naturally. However I have to make a conscious effort to get out of the house and network! This year one of my resolves is to deepen connections with people I’ve already identified and would like to get to know better. That means coffee dates, play dates, breakfast meetings, park outings and so on need to be planned – at least one major outing a month and then more as I get comfortable around doing this.
So these are the three words that I hope will drive my 2013. Do let me know in the comments box below what you think about the concept of 3 words for the year and specifically of my 3 words. Also let me know what your 3 words are either in the comments section or as a link to your own blog post. I look forward to hearing from you!