New Year, New You?

New Year’s Resolutions for IT People, Do They Really Work?

Do resolutions and personal goal setting really work? Or are we just kidding ourselves.

That depends on who you are.

Ever since I read Gretchen Rubin’s “The Four Tendencies” book and took her 2 minute quiz, I finally figured out why most of the time I’m no good when it comes to making goals for myself and achieving them or keeping New Year’s resolutions.

You see in her language, I’m an Obliger. That means, I’m great at meeting other people’s expectations of me, I’m not great at meeting my own expectations of me.

So, when it comes to working for my clients or candidates, I’m all in. I’ll meet that deadline, return that phone call, do that interview. But when it comes to do the cashflow report every week, budgeting for next year or heck even exercising regularly, I struggle. Why? Because cashflow reports, budgeting and exercise are only for me. I’m not letting down anyone external to myself if I don’t get them done in time… and that’s my problem.

It’s not a universal problem though, about 37% of us are Obligers and need external accountability to achieve their goals. Upholders don’t have that problem, they’ve got other issues.

So if you want to do more certifications, more training, more home lab projects, an MBA or whatever it is to advance your career and every year you find yourself saying.. this year will be better. I’m going to do it this year. I’m going to do some study every night.

Perhaps first consider what sort of a person you are when it comes to meeting your own expectations. Knowing this one thing could help you put a strategy in place that will actually see you make those lasting behavioural changes that will allow you to achieve those goals you set for yourself.

It did for me at least.

I now do cashflow reports, every week, without fail. How come?

Because once I found out I was an Obliger and needed external accountability to meet my own goals, I set up a meeting with someone external to my business each week to go through the cashflow. I’ll let him down if I haven’t sent through the report for us to meet about. And he’s someone that’s not shy about asking why he hasn’t received his cashflow report yet.
Thanks Dad.

Do yourself a favour, take the quiz and let me know what you are – Obliger, Upholder, Questioner or Rebel.

There’s strategies appropriate to all of them to help you stick to your commitments and meet your goals.

Got to go. Got a Cashflow report to send off. Reach out if you need IT career guidance.

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