Setting New Year's Goals that Really Matter to You
The Sprocket Report
Everyone is talking about reviewing the past year and planning for the new year. No doubt you are doing the same for your business. Let’s play devil’s advocate and challenge the goals you may be setting for 2020.
While we aren’t business coaches, we have run businesses of various kinds for 20+ years, so we have accumulated a good bit of experience. Over such a period of time, one’s perspective changes. If you are in a different place than we are right now, looking from our point-of-view could jumpstart some interesting conversations about your goal-planning.
About that “Passion” Thing
“Find your passion” has been popular advice. It fits perfectly with “When you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.” For some, that advice works, but it doesn’t work for everyone and you shouldn’t beat yourself up about it. Here are a few reasons why:
- You don’t yet know what your passion is.
- You’re afraid “working at it” will ruin the joy of your passion.
- Even though you are passionate about something, it simply won’t pay the bills.
- You successfully turned your passion into a business, but now all you do is run the business instead doing of the thing you were passionate about.
- You used to be passionate about something, but once it became your job, you got burnt out.
Yes, an eight hour day completing routine tasks for your employer can be soul-sucking. On the flipside, if you run a business based on your passion, you can easily put in twelve hours or even more, many of which will be routine tasks rather than devoted to your passion.
Thoughts to consider:
- Maybe it would be better to work eight hours for someone else and then go home to have fun with your passion project. Spending the time outside of your working day could keep it special.
- When your livelihood doesn’t depend on it, it’s easier to swap for a new and different passion.
Working toward Retirement
Working hard so you can one day leave the work world to take it easy is a social tradition. But the definition of “retirement” is pretty fluid. Professional athletes retire by age 40 or even earlier, although most still have to earn an income afterwards. Jobs with pensions provide the option to retire in your fifties, even though you still have so much to offer.
On the other hand, age discrimination is a real thing, so finding a new job in the second half of your life can be difficult. Or an out-of-the-blue health issue can derail your assumption that you will continue to work into your 70s. Also, in our society, we are defined by what we “do” so when we aren’t “doing” something who are we?
Thoughts to consider:
- Side hustles can provide extra cash during the top working years and then ramped up or down during “retirement” years.
- Also, when you are your own boss, you can’t be fired for being too old or “over-qualified.”
The Entrepreneur Conundrum
Entrepreneurship has pros and cons, obviously. Not only is the decision extremely personal, but your opinion may change over time. Supposition of what you can or can’t handle is so very different than the actuality.
Thoughts to consider:
- When you’re the boss, there’s no one to blame but yourself.
- Invoicing and collections – not to mention a steady income stream – can be tricky to achieve.
- Entrepreneurs have a hard time actually getting away from work for a vacation or even a weekend.
- Although the hours can be long, you can set your own schedule to be there for your kids or parents or pets.
- The company’s decisions and compromises are yours to make.
- You can work as much as you want for as long as you want as your situation changes.
New Year’s resolutions tend to be along the lines of “I will improve this” or “I will stop doing that,” but instead of tweaking what you currently do, the challenge is to think deeper. Is 2020 the year you become an entrepreneur? Or the year you get a new job? Will you change careers? Add a side hustle? There are so many possibilities and lots of folks who have advice. Listen with an open mind. Be realistic about your expectations. Face the difficult questions. And then go with your gut.
It goes without saying that if a website is part of your 2020 goals, we’re here to support you. We wish you the very best in the New Year!