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Here we go…another new year is officially upon us. As a coach, I must admit, I love this time of year because everyone is thinking about their personal goals for the up and coming year. While it would be great if we all thought about our goals year around, it just doesn’t happen. As an athlete, I love the idea of a fresh start. A clean slate. That new sheet of ice if you will. Whichever way you choose to look at it, here are some quick tips on how to use the new year to drive your performance to the next level:

-Stop and take stock: One of the biggest oversights I see day in and day out in my work with busy professionals is that they fail to stop and take stock of the victories along the way. Sure we celebrate a big raise or new account, but what about all of the many other tiny victories along the way? I teach my clients to strategically stop and take stock of their victories every chance they get. Doing so is scientifically proven to enhance their confidence. What better time to stop and take stock than at the conclusion of a calendar year? Doing so will ensure you collect all the resourceful memories and experiences from the past year and take them with you into the next, as building blocks to your next big success.

-Intention drives attention: What you focus on will naturally expand. Think of magnified glass. Setting your intentions for the year ahead (what you want not what you don’t want) is a powerful mental technique that is scientifically proven to drive your physical results. Remember, the body does what the brain tells it to do. Taking the time to set some very specific and descriptive intentions about the year ahead will help you accomplish numerous benefits like increased clarity, motivation and focus. Think of it like programming your computer, only the computer in this case is your brain, sending instructions to your body about how you want it to perform.

-Those who fail to plan are really just planning to fail: Most important step in achieving something new is to have a plan. Start with the end in mind (your intentions) and then strategically work your way backwards: identify any and all obstacles to reaching your intentions, both internal and external, identify solutions for overcoming each obstacle, prioritize the order in which you plan to act on each solution and then finally create a system for tracking and measuring your success along the way (create benchmarks for success).

Remember, as elite performers we MUST exploit every opportunity to get ahead. That means looking for every mental and physical edge possible. The biggest mistake people make is that they fail to do the mental work ahead of time, failing to set the stage for their success. Make this new year different. Make a commitment to do that extra step and in no time you will be thanking me, I promise you that!

Happy New Year friends!

-Coach Susan

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