I have never been one for making New Year’s resolutions. In my experience, these grand promises we make to ourselves often prove to be more daunting than beneficial and are rarely sustainable beyond the first few weeks of the year, leading to feelings of failure.
This year, I am taking a different approach. I’m focusing on gradual, consistent improvement—implementing small, manageable daily changes that allow me to do better work and commit to being excellent in what I do.
Setting my focus on doing better work does not mean my current work isn’t great or impactful. It means I am setting a goal of sustainable excellence—and creating a system that allows me to support myself in reaching my greatest potential.
Below are a few simple strategies I’m incorporating into my work routine in 2024. I encourage you to try integrating one, two, or all these habits into your work life, too. I am confident these little steps, taken consistently, will lead to big achievements over time.
1. GET CLARITY
Continually ensure everyone is on the same page by asking more clarifying questions. I regularly step back and ask myself the question, what is the ultimate goal here?
2. CELEBRATE WHAT IS WORKING
It is easy to focus on what needs fixing. But this year, I want to make sure we also highlight what is working well. Recognizing our successes helps us know what we should keep doing or build upon. Celebrating the wins is also great for team building and motivation.
3. BLOCK TIME FOR FOCUS WORK—AND THEN TAKE A BREAK
In our fast-paced world, I find it helpful to allocate specific blocks of time for my high-impact work and other big projects. This ensures I have the time and focus needed to tackle my critical, strategic work—while reducing the chances of multitasking, which I know decreases my productivity. I have also learned to build in time for a quick brain break to refresh my mind before I move on to my next meeting, task, or project.
4. PRIORITIZE TOMORROW'S TASKS—TODAY
At the end of each day, I list the top three tasks for the following day. This practice helps me to start my day with more focus and ensures I get the most important tasks done first. I have also noticed when I remove the uncertainty of what is coming up, I have less stress and anxiety.
5. BRING POSITIVITY
Showing up is important, but attitude is everything. When one person shows up with brightness and enthusiasm, it can uplift the entire team's morale—which makes work more enjoyable for everyone—and leads to increased productivity. While it is not realistic to always be in a great mood, my goal is to focus on being aware of how I am showing up and the impact it has on those I work with.
6. MAKE TIME FOR DAILY EXERCISE
Prioritizing my physical and mental well-being ensures I stay sharp, energized, and ready to tackle whatever comes my way. Even when there isn’t time for a full workout, a quick 10-minute walk can be incredibly beneficial and an easy way to clear my mind.
I am excited to see how these little changes will add up over the year. It is not about being perfect; it is about improving a tiny bit every day. I encourage you to think about the small changes you can make, too. When we focus on individual excellence through small, consistent habits, we contribute to our collective strength.
Here is to a year of growth, shared success, and being BETTER TOGETHER.
Happy new year!