Welcoming in 2019!
As we welcome in 2019, we find ourselves in our new home state of Wisconsin, in a Hyatt Place hotel. The room smells of our dogs, and is littered with the dog kennels, several suitcases, and even some boxes as we wait to get into our rental cabin tomorrow. Not exactly how I (Colin) expected to be welcoming in the new year until about two months ago when I accepted a new job at Vortex Optics. Here are some things I learned in 2018 that led me to this life-changing decision.
My Top 4 Lessons from 2018
While I certainly learned a lot in 2018, perhaps what I really learned was how to apply principles I already knew. None of the lessons on my list are things I didn’t know before, I just had never really applied them. I hope you find some of my lessons learned (or applied) helpful to you as we enter a new year with new challenges and opportunities. Without further delay, here are my top 4 lessons from 2018!
1. No one owes you anything!
I know, I know… this one is really obvious! Yet, it bears repeating. No one owes you anything! Perhaps more of us need this reminder on a daily basis than we’d like to think. If you want something, you are responsible to make it happen! No one is going to offer it to you; no one is going to make sure you have what you need or want. Even if you attempt to work harder than the next guy, that does not guarantee that you will get what you want. Whether it’s from a boss, the government, a parent, or anyone else… just because you worked hard to earn something does not mean that someone is going to give you what you wanted, even if you did earn it. The sooner you come to terms with this fact, the better off you will be. It will completely change your mindset on how you approach the rest of your life. It also leads me into #2!
2. Take responsibility for everything!
If no one owes me anything, that means that I am ultimately responsible to get what I want in life. Whether it’s a possession, an experience, fulfillment or something else entirely… if I don’t have what I want, I am the only one responsible. Like I described in #1, maybe you worked harder than the other guy at work, but you still didn’t get that thing you wanted (a promotion, a raise, new opportunity). If that’s the case, take responsibility. Maybe you didn’t work as hard as you thought. Maybe your boss didn’t realize how hard you were working. Or, maybe you didn’t clearly communicate what you were hoping to get based on the work load you achieved. By taking responsibility you are refusing to be a victim of the circumstance and you are giving yourself the power to do something about it in the future. So, what are you going to do in the future? Let’s look at #3.
3. Don’t just dream, set goals… Big Audacious Goals!
If I am the only one responsible for getting what I want in life, I had better know two things: What I want, and how I’m going to get it. If you have never set goals before, check out Michael Hyatt’s Goal Setting article. Michael Hyatt, as well as many other highly successful business leaders, will tell you to make sure your goals are written down, and SMART (Specific, Measurable, Actionable, Realistic, and Time-Bound). In Michael Hyatt’s Full Focus Planner, he also adds ER (Evaluate and Readjust) to the acronym which makes them SMARTER goals. Just by writing down your goals on paper, you are FAR more likely to accomplish them. This lesson has been huge for me over the last few years! I hope it makes as big of an impact on your life as it has on mine!
4. Take bold risks, and more of them!
Confession time… I have become a podcast junkie. One podcast I have particularly enjoyed is the Order of Man podcast by Ryan Michler. The truth of this lesson hit me right between the eyes about 3-4 months ago. To quote Ryan Michler, he said “Take more calculated risks.” I definitely agree with Ryan’s statement, and I would add to it to make those risks calculated and bold, and take more of them. You’ve probably heard it said, “If you want something you’ve never had, you have to do something you’ve never done.” Challenge what you are believing about the way things “have to be”! Be willing to make calculated, bold changes in order to realize a dream. It’s never too late to pursue a dream… as long as you’ve still got air in your lungs, and will to find a way.
Putting It All Together
So, in 2019 remember: No one owes you anything; Take responsibility for everything; Set big audacious goals; and, Take more bold risks. Who knows, you just might end up moving to Wisconsin!