But it’s still early. So here’s my reason for humbug. Resolutions don’t necessary work, but family plans do — at least in our family.
Here are some ideas on practical planning for a new year and not a resolution in sight.
First, assess your current condition and situation. Where are you (and your family) on life’s path? How often do you and your spouse and/or kids get together for a family business meeting?
I use the word “outcome” a lot when I’m mapping out goals, realistic deadlines and blueprints. What outcome am I looking for?
Four broad categories help me define where I am at the moment and where I want/need to go, thus the outcome on family, business-financial, spiritual and health.
The first thing I want to gauge is where my wife Marilyn and I are in our lives. We look at what’s going on, what’s happening near- and long-term, which is no more that 12-18 months. Just like everyone, our lives change almost daily. Maybe not a momentous event, but for sure we have events we plan — and then life steps in and surprises us. There’s no way to structure an unexpected happening, but we have to be able not to be overcome with a jolt.
We usually look at the year just ending to get feedback on how well we did with last year’s planning and what mistakes we made. We almost always make an error or two somewhere along the way.
We prioritize each of the categories by the months ahead. We know there will be weddings and graduations in the spring and summer. We know the months in which we may be taking a vacation. We know that the holidays need a little planning — even while our family list is changing. And so on. We do not dig too deeply in these forecasts. I don’t want to get caught up in minutiae. Tiny little items will bog us down, we are looking at the big picture here.