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As a New Year arrives, many will start the year off by recalling the ups and downs of the prior twelve months. This is a good thing. This valuable time of reflection serves to highlight what went well and what did not. The wise person will extract the lessons learned and incorporate them into new disciplines, actions, and decisions that the new year will demand. As you begin to shake the dust off of the prior year and begin establishing new goals, resolutions, and action plans, the key ingredient to a prosperous new year and the attainment of your intentions will be how solidly you stand your ground with your list of non-negotiables. Ahhhh, yes. That’s where you’re probably wondering, “what list of non-negotiables?” What does that even mean? Here is a fact that you can take to the bank. Whether high, moderate, or low-level achievers, most people have never sat down and considered what is non-negotiable in their pursuit of new resolutions, goals, and dreams. In other words, what is it that I will not give in to or compromise that can harm my journey if I do? This, above all, I contend, is the most critical aspect of any new year planning, yet most do not even consider such a thing.

Let me share a few examples. If you’re pursuing a better body or healthier living, waking up earlier to exercise is non-negotiable. Getting to the gym a few days a week is non-negotiable. If your goal is to score higher on academic exams, staying up late or doing extra work on the weekends is non-negotiable. It’s what you have to do. Period. It’s non-negotiable. Making more money will require you to develop new and better business skills that will cost you money and time, which is non-negotiable. It’s what you need to do, and that settles it. If expanding your mind and growing is a desire in the new year, then reading more is non-negotiable. Reaching out to a mentor or a qualified leader or specialist in areas you desire improvement is an absolute. No questions asked. If you want to enrich your relationships this year, speaking affection, encouragement, and support is non-negotiable.

Bottom line, whatever you have decided that you will pursue in this new year, you will have to sit down (immediately) and begin noting not only what it will take to arrive at your target but what you will not negotiate to stand your ground until you arrive at your pre-determined place of success.

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