New Year – a time to make choices

by Cecilia Magnergård on December 31, 2013

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Once more we find ourselves in the season where one year comes to an end and a new one begins – the daily life stops for a few days, and we are given time to think through the time that has past and set our hopes for the upcoming year.

This time of the year provides us with a few days to reflect and relax, something that is highly valuable in our modern always-connected world. If we were to ask the Harvard economist Sendhil Mullainathan or the Princeton psychologist Eldar Shafir for a New Year-strategy, they would most likely recommend us to do fewer things in 2014 than the years before. The latest research shows that when already busy people get busier bad decisions easier gets made causing ignored deadlines leading to a vicious cycle of falling further and further behind.

As we go into 2014 I know I will face challenges, but at the same time I also know that the challenges are to be overcome, not to overwhelm. Nevertheless, the road to success is not straight, but a good strategy or well-set goals eases the ride. Accordingly, here follows a few suitable guidelines and principles that can be used while you plan your year to come.

Learn by the past and thereafter look forward

Give yourself time to profoundly look back at 2013; identify your failures and celebrate your successes. Conclude what you learned from both, and think of adequate changes to be made in 2014. Define what your success looks like for 2014 and set high yet achievable goals. Make sure you know how your success looks like but do not just think it; it is too easy to forget. Outline it by constructing a dream board, writing a list month by month or write a year-end letter. Thereafter, map out how to get there and what resources you will need, entering 2014 knowing how your success looks like and what you will need to reach it will increase your success rate significantly.

Time

Time is goldenTime is one of the most valuable commodities we are given; and it is much like gold, so spend it wisely. Apply it compassionately on causes and with people who matter, and make sure to fill your time carefully – do not waste it. Make sure to devote time into your day that is only for you.

Myself, I get up every morning at 5:30 a.m. to run. It is my dedicated time to connect with nature, reflect and exercise.

Make sure to fill your calendar wisely; and do not forget yourself, give yourself time to reflect on your own, time that is dedicated to nothing but you. We all live by the same rules, every individuals day is 24 hours. How well you spend them is what will define your life.

Surround yourself with intelligent people

Every conversation you have, and every action you make do matter. Colleagues, mentors, friends and family should help make you the best possible version of yourself. In order to reach that, make sure to surround yourself with people that challenge you intellectually that has the possibility to look upon actions from a different perspective than yourself. Learn to take bad critics; it is often a very good way to improve. At the end of the day you are the sum of all your parts, actions and relationships.

Learn something new

clip_image004Have you vowed to make this year the year to learn something new? Whether you have decided to learn a new language, fix the car or read a new book, you will find life long learning and education to be the easiest, most motivating New Year’s resolution to keep.

There is nothing like the learning and the excitement that comes from doing something completely new for the first time. Be brave and believe in your self; take courageous steps to define the brand of you in 2014 and keep yourself updated to the latest research accordingly, it will be one of the best gifts you will give yourself.

Manage your attitude

Each one of us has the power to choose how we show up to life every day; hands out or sleeves rolled up. As written in one of my previous blog-articles. present research outline that positive emotions generating positive thinking expands attention and alertness; critical tools for anyone who attempts to solve a problem or is considering a business opportunity. Manage ourselves to be positive will not only make us generally happier but it will also make us better and more powerful researchers, entrepreneurs or business managers.

Fit in Fitness

The evidence for consistent workout and fitness is clear; regular exercise has been associated with more health benefits than anything else known to man. Studies show that it increases longevity, lowers blood pressure, enhances our mood, reduces risk of cancer and much more. Shortly, regular exercise helps making us happier, more focused and live longer; consequently the choice of fitting in fitness to 2014 should be easy.

In the always-connected world we live in, we rarely take a step back and reflect on what we have learned, what we have accomplished or celebrate success. In the new year challenge yourself – make 2014 the year when you continuously reflect on what you learn, comprehend the virtuous things you accomplish and frequently celebrate your success!

With all good wishes for the New Year!

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About Cecilia Magnergård :

Analyst with deep knowledge in Economic Strategy, Innovation Management and Business Developmed combined with a profound interest in complex problem solving and the global financial markets. She has an BSc in economics and a Master of Science with a major in Engineering and Management specialised in Economics of Innovation and Growth from the Royal Institute of Technology.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Lennart Cragéus December 31, 2013 at 08:10

Once again I have read your “article”. I am impressed by your way to describe economic strategy ,business development combined with human aspects.
You say:Learn by the past and thereafter look forward.
You also say: You must also think about yourself .Be kind to yourself.
I agree: If you shall succeed to “help” people ,companies, friends with their promblems you must be “strong” with good self-confidence.

Looking forward to read new articles from you next year.
Best regards
Lennart

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