The Beauty of New Beginnings
Ahh, the first day of school… My kids started 1st, 3rd and 5th grade today. They woke up at 6:00am (on their own), got ready (also on their own), had breakfast without fighting (trust me, that is RARE) and went on their merry way. Bright eyed, new pencils and markers in their bags. New clothes, new shoes. New notebooks ready for a year of learning to be etched inside their pages.
There is nothing like a new beginning. The start of something new. At that point in time all you have is hope and belief that you can build on what you currently have.
This weekend I also happened to participate in my Fantasy Football draft. The draft is my favorite part of the season. You get to pick the players you want on your team and your roster is an empty canvas of things to come. I can imagine how the season will turn out, how well my players will do, the trophy I am going to win, etc., etc.
The optimism in new beginnings can be like a drug. A shot of endorphins to the brain. All because we can see the potential in what we are about to go through. The road ahead is exciting and terrifying all at the same time. This burst of energy can be leveraged into making sure that we put our best foot forward and that we can set up the foundation of resilience we will need for the turbulences that will be sure to come.
So how can we bottle this magic? How come the 54th day of school, or the 5th week of Fantasy Football, does not feel the same? How come we get weathered down, the longer we stick with something?
The answer is that it is all in your head. We decide its exciting because of a date we set where we clean our slates and start fresh. We could have a continuous, never ending season of fantasy football, but we choose to start fresh. We could have continuous learning without any beginning or ending, but we set up a system of new beginnings.
At work we can do the same thing for ourselves. Instead of viewing work as a never-ending cycle of clocking in and clocking out, doing the same thing every day, how can we set things up so that we can get excited about each day, week, year to come? The answer lies in setting timely goals.
The only way you can have a new beginning is if you have an ending to something else. You can only start 5th grade if you end 4th grade. You can only start a new season of Fantasy Football once last season has ended. At work, strive to find ways to begin and end activities. You could start out every week with a status meeting and end every week with a debrief of the work that was done. Every status meeting is now a new beginning. You can have a kick off for a new project and establish a deadline to execute all deliverables. When it is done, have a celebration. Something to acknowledge that this project is wrapped up and we are ready for a new one.
Find a way to set goals that are incremental, and that can reset. If you have a revenue goal for the year, break it in to quarters. Every quarter is now a new beginning. If you work in manufacturing, set goals for the week. Every week is a chance to start new. Same can be done with cold calls, writing assignments, operations. Set up actions that can be counted and can start new. That way you are always starting over and can see the spoils of your labor.
Regardless of what you do, take advantage of these new beginnings. Get people excited. Get yourself excited. A new beginning just means that you have the opportunity to start over, to be better, to excel, to get things done. Let the constraints of the past wash away with the endings you established, and start every year, every month, every week, every day as it is your first day of school. Your success awaits.
Andre Mello is a Certified Business Coach and is taking advantage of not having rug rats around to have his own new beginning. The world awaits. Andre has been in leadership and coaching for over 10 years. If you would like to connect with him, please visit www.wysecoaching.com.