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To Be or Not to Be – That is the Question

I must confess I was a complete slacker over the holidays. I had the best of intentions to organize, purge, sort and file. I had my To Do list planned with things I needed to get done to prepare for 2014. This included my personal and business goals, listing my 2013 accomplishments, creating the structure I needed going forward. Instead I did a lot of walking in the woods, yoga, spent time with family and friends – even had a spa day with my mother and sister.

This year has been busier than most. With my role as Chair at the Burlington Chamber, a growing business and my “baby” heading off to University, it has been, shall we say; full. I recognized early into the holiday that I needed deep relaxation and to re-energize in order to be my personal best in 2014.

So I made a conscious decision to practice what I preach and did the following:

Accept – rather than stick rigidly to my plan and judge the lack of following the plan and myself as a failure, I recognized that doing what I needed to do to fill my tanks took priority. According to the latest neuro-science research, managing our emotional state is one of the keys to developing a Super Brain. Mastering our emotional side (i.e., not feeling guilt for not following the plan) makes room for insight, intuition, creativity and imagination (hmm that sounds like a formula for innovation - something every workplace could use more of).

Being – There are four aspects of human existence – being, feeling, thinking and doing (according to guru Deepak Chopra). It seems to me most of us spend the bulk of our time in the reverse order – doing, thinking, feeling with very little being. Being is nurturing and provides the fuel we need to do and think. I spent the bulk of my time being and reaped the benefits.

Why – On my work hiatus I spent some time reflecting on my goals. I must confess I was shocked when an article I read (again by Deepak Chopra) mentioned that goals are not the end all be all. It talked about how many “so called successful people” achieve their goals but in the process lose their health, their happiness, their family, themselves. My guess is these folks are victims of focusing on the what without considering the why. Your what could be to grow your business to X $. Now the question to ask yourself is why? Why does this matter to you? If we focus on the what without considering the why, our victory is hollow. We drive ourselves hard to get to the finish line without enjoying the journey. A goal is the measure of something much deeper we desire. Any car will get you from A to B. It’s how that car makes you feel or your belief of how it will make you feel that moves you to make the purchase. As human beings we like to think we are logical when in fact, research supports we are ruled by emotion.

So when you set your sites on goal setting this year consider the why. There’s a higher probability you’ll buy in yourself and get buy in across your organization which in turn increases the probability you’ll achieve your desired outcome. Here’s to a prosperous 2014, may it be your best year ever!

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