New Year Reflections: What Do I Want to Create?

It has been my custom in the first days of a new year to set goals and aspirations for the coming year. This year I added two distinctions to the process and found them very useful. So I thought I would share them here.

The first I wrote about last week. Rather than engaging in a task forward goal setting process, I envision the end of the year, looking backward. What do I want to feel good about from 2009? How will I have traversed the year in order to create something new? I try to look at this from all four domains, not just from the standpoint of the P/L. And I also separate my own growth goals from those of my business. (It is remarkable how easily the two can meld for a small company.)

The second change this year comes from work by my colleague and friend David Emerald, author of The Power of TED. David’s work is focused and shifting the drama and pain originally described by Steven Karpman as the Drama Triangle. More information is here; however, in shortest form, TED shifts the relational roles of Victim, Rescuer and Persecutor to the more productive and healthier roles of Creator, Coach and Challenger.

Using this concept, I added to my personal and business new year’s reflection these three questions:

  1. What do I want to create this year?
  2. What are the capacities and skills I will have to cultivate or acquire to accomplish that end?
  3. What are the challenges that will test my ability to deliver?

These kinds of questions are not new. Much like SWOT and other basic planning summaries, they seek to inventory the tools and risks in making a change or accomplishing a goal. But in light of the Drama Triangle, this particular set of questions requires that I remain accountable for my own contributions and challenges, rather than make it a purely mental exercise.

So, I offer this to you as you begin a new year. What do you want to become this year? What capabilities will you have to find or augment to get there? What are the challenges that will most severely test your ability to be successful?

Ready for a new year?