By Janine Vanderburg, President/CEO, Joining Vision and Action

Stop doing in 2017

Why should you think about what you will stop doing in 2017?

By this time, many of you have made your New Year resolutions or set your goals. You’ve decided what you want more of in 2017. We all know that more, more, more is a recipe for burnout. So how do you make place and time in your life for the things that you want to accomplish this year? Well, you make a list of the things you are going to stop doing in 2017. A great place to start is by analyzing things you spent time on last year that didn’t make progress towards a goal.

Here are some of the things on my list. I’ve written them down on a giant post-it and pasted it on the first page of my planner where I can review it every day before the day starts.

Saying yes to community involvement activities that don’t further my main goals. This year, I’m stepping down from two boards and committees (I’ll still serve on three). They do important work, work that I support. But to be effective on a board, you need to spend time, and I need that some of that time to focus on my primary goals for the year. I don’t want to be the board member that executive directors complain about, so I’m stepping down. And giving myself back 4-6 hours per month. How to say NO? I highly recommend reading William Ury’s The Power of a Positive No.

Doing other people’s work. It’s often easier just to do something ourselves—it’s within our comfort level because we’ve done it so long, and it takes less time than teaching or showing someone else how to do it. I’m not doing that this year.

Getting into political discourse—okay, arguments J–on social media. Which changed no one’s minds, ever. The 2016 political campaigns were rough and disappointing for many. I’m focused on political action this year—how I can use my skills and experience to make a difference.

Complaining. (see above). I’m taking action instead.

Going to Target unless I have something specific to buy. And maybe not even then. A planned quick stop into Target can turn into one hour and come home with $100 of stuff I didn’t need.

So there’s my list. What will YOU say no to this year?