We’re a few weeks into 2019 and I think it’s safe to say we’re all settling into the New Year. Maybe 2018 wasn’t all you wanted it to be, so 2019 is your chance to give it another go. Don’t worry if you didn’t make any life-changing resolutions before the clock struck midnight on December 31st. Now is as good a time as ever to set some personal goals and make realistic resolutions. As a small business owner or entrepreneur, business usually comes first. But 2019 is the year to take care of you! Here are 10 resolutions to make this year:
Cut Back on Screen Time
We’re all guilty of spending too much time on our smartphones. You pick it up to check an email or a social media notification, but you get sucked in and end up spending (er, wasting) hours of your time mindlessly scrolling. As a business owner or entrepreneur, your time is money! That’s not to say that you should be spending the time you are mindlessly scrolling working. But, there are plenty of better ways you could be spending that time, especially when your time is a hot commodity.
We use analytics in small business all the time. So, why not use it to help you reign in your screen time? If you use Apple products, the new iOS update for iPhone tracks your screen time and updates you on your usage. You can set limits and your phone will let you know if you exceed them. If you are an Android user, there are plenty of great apps that you can install. Quality Time is a well-known and established free app that has similar features to the iOS tracking feature. It does things like gives you daily usage alerts, forced breaks.
Don’t roll your eyes, this one is important! A lot of people make exercising more a resolution each year, and most people don’t follow through. That’s because they’re making it a resolution for the wrong reasons, most notably to lose weight. And you don’t have to hit the gym hard 5 days a week at 5 am. You’re definitely not going to keep up with that resolution unless you are committed to making a major lifestyle change.
To make exercising one of your more attainable and realistic resolutions to make this year, find something you love to do. There are tons of activities that count as exercise that aren’t running or weight lifting, although those are great ways to get your body moving. Try things like cycling, yoga, a dance class, or simply commit to taking a short walk every day. Your body and your mind will thank you. Getting your sweat on makes it easier to focus when it’s time to get down to business.
Get out there and get to know other small business owners, or professionals in your field, that are in your community. Having a strong network can be great for your personal and professional life. You might make some new business contacts or maybe some new friends. Set a goal of attending one networking event per month. Extra points if you host one yourself.
Planning ahead can be a glorious thing. Research what’s going on in your industry and register for a couple of conferences. If you register for them now, when the time comes to attend, you’ll have no excuses not to go. You can schedule all of your other commitments around them for the rest of the year. Conferences are a great way to keep up on industry best practices and to grow your network.
Do Something That Scares You
Think back to when you quit your 9-5 job to embark on your entrepreneurial or small business journey. That was scary. This year make it a resolution to get out of your comfort zone. Maybe volunteer to lead an event in your community, speak to local students about becoming an entrepreneur (kids are a tough crowd!), start a book club, try a new dish at your favorite restaurant, or invite your team to give you feedback on how you’re doing as the boss.
Give Back to Employees
Many people resolve to give back to their communities in the New Year. One way you can do that is to give back to your own employees. Make them feel appreciated. Plan office lunches (and take care of the bill), take a company-wide trip or morale outing or give them extra time off. You’ll feel good about taking care of your people, and as a bonus, you’ll probably see increased loyalty and performance.
Right up there with exercise, getting enough sleep has a huge impact on your performance. This is one of the resolutions to make this year that will yield results. The National Sleep Foundation says that lack of sleep can dramatically affect your work performance and that when you’re tired at work, “your brain is not as creative and won’t process information as quickly or retain important facts as well.” As the brains behind your business, you can’t afford not to get a good night’s sleep. Make it a priority this year.
Commit to a Schedule
One of your resolutions to make this year should be to prioritize and commit to a schedule. If you’re in search of that elusive work/life balance, this is where you need to start. Get a planner, use Google calendar or Microsoft Outlook calendar to keep track of your time. Try implementing a technique like schedule chunking to make the most out of the time you spend in the office and at home.
Learn a New Skill
Learning a new skill can be beneficial to your personal growth as well as your business. Even if the new skill you choose to learn isn’t directly related to your business, you’re still growing as an individual and as a leader.