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24 Jan

Decide what this year’s structure improvement will be

Datum: 2018-01-24 15:06

The new year is still fresh and more or less a blank page to fill. And even though your cal­en­dar might be fill­ing up with appoint­ments and engage­ments for the next year to come already, I am sure you have space for activ­i­ties that will refine your work­ing meth­ods and structure.

I am assum­ing this because I am guess­ing you are not com­plete­ly and entire­ly hap­py with how your days and weeks turn out — per­haps there is some room for improve­ment? I know I am not, and that I will be mak­ing changes this year to bring myself a step clos­er to where I ulti­mate­ly want to be. I too had things hap­pen last year that were not to my lik­ing; sit­u­a­tions I wish to han­dle dif­fer­ent­ly were they to hap­pen again. To me, and I am sure to you as well, there is a cer­tain ele­ment of refin­ing and fine-tun­ing in every­thing I do — even dur­ing the most ordi­nary days. Per­haps you share my belief and expe­ri­ence that this con­stant striv­ing to improve how I work is quite enjoy­able, and to some extent almost addictive. 

So, what part of your struc­ture do you want to improve through­out this year? You will prob­a­bly make a great num­ber of read­just­ments, but if you had to choose just one thing you will change — what would it be?

Do this

  1. Take a moment or two to pon­der what struc­ture-relat­ed short­com­ing you want to revise dur­ing the year ahead. It can be any­thing that has not worked to your lik­ing late­ly. Per­son­al­ly I will let the year ahead be all about sim­pli­fy­ing things.

  2. Set a goal that defines how you want to improve and how much, so that you have a rea­son to cel­e­brate when you have suc­cess­ful­ly achieved it, since these small every­day vic­to­ries” do a lot for our gen­er­al sense of well­be­ing. My goal is to sim­pli­fy at least 25 rou­tines or things I do reg­u­lar­ly, so that I have more time, zest and ener­gy for all the things I would rather do.

  3. If the new improve­ment means you have to do some­thing new or act in a new way when some­thing spe­cial hap­pens, for­mu­late it as an if …, then …”-state­ment, a so called imple­men­ta­tion inten­tion”. Accord­ing to pro­fes­sor Goll­witzer it will then be eas­i­er to remem­ber doing things accord­ing to the new way from now on.

  4. If you should want to remind your­self to act accord­ing to the new way, write a note remind­ing your­self or think of some oth­er phys­i­cal reminder that sticks out” in one of the two ways the researchers Milk­man and Rogers recommend.

  5. If you need to take out, restruc­ture or cre­ate some­thing before mak­ing the struc­ture improve­ment that will take you longer than day to do, make it into a project, which you split into small steps and then write these on your to-do-list.

  6. You will now be able to take small steps often, and even­tu­al­ly your struc­ture will be at least a bit bet­ter, and so will your work days.

All the way to the fin­ish line
If you decide on refin­ing at least one aspect of your struc­ture right now at the begin­ning of the year, you are more like­ly to suc­ceed. It will be eas­i­er to take small, con­crete steps in the right direc­tion — espe­cial­ly if your days tend to be intense and stress­ful. It will be eas­i­er to suc­cess­ful­ly make your desired change, and you will reap the fruits of your labor soon­er as well.

What’s your way?
What improve­ments are you look­ing to make in the year to come? Write and share your struc­ture-relat­ed New Years res­o­lu­tion here in a comment.