Opinion Matters

With Gazette Opinion Editor Greg Peck

For 2014, how about resolving what NOT to do?

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Greg Peck
December 31, 2013

I heard on a national radio report Monday that about 45 percent of us will be making New Year's resolutions as we ring in 2014. Probably half or more of those who do will be breaking those vows in the days or weeks ahead. For some of us, those failures will turn out to be downright depressing.

That radio report reminded me of a blog I read the other day from Michael Hyatt, who focuses on helping leaders leverage influence.

He says dedicated people can keep adding to their “to-do” lists until these lists have more items than they can physically accomplish. He suggests, then, starting a “not-to-do list,” an idea he stumbled across several years ago.

Keep in mind that Hyatt's focus is on helping people succeed at work. He says productive workers attract more and more assignments, becoming “task magnets.”

“I don't care how good you are, you only have so much energy and so much time,” Hyatt points out.

So to continue growing professionally, you must decide periodically what NOT to do.

Hyatt suggests that “you must say 'no' if you are going to say 'yes' to the things that really count—both in your job and in your life.”

That seems like sound advice to me, especially as you take these last few hours before the new year to consider a few resolutions to change your way of life. In order to make “to-do” resolutions, you perhaps should balance them with “not-to-do” vows, as well.

Please play it safe out there if you're heading out tonight. Enjoy a happy, healthy new year. And if you do make resolutions, good luck in keeping them.

Greg Peck can be reached at (608) 755-8278 or gpeck@gazettextra.com. Or follow him on Twitter or Facebook.

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