Untangling the End-of-Year Knot if Perspective is Lost

As year-end looms and you work to meet the year’s final goals, here are two of many possible scenarios.
1. You are GOOD for the finish line.
You have the right time, money, energy, attention, skills and other resources you need to get the job done.
2. You are HOPING miracles are real…because you need one now.
In this case, priorities may be unclear, or absent.
Resources may be limited, or poorly aligned with your goals.
Skills, knowledge or experience available to get the job done may be less than what you know now is necessary to be successful, at least the way this year has worked out.
If you’re in that hoping-for-a-miracle end-of-year situation, well, remember that you’re not alone.
Many people and teams are discovering the same thing at this point in the year, like it or not.
Sometimes circumstances and priorities in life get all tangled up, and you can start to feel overwhelmed. 
And when a deadline is looming – like year-end – the situation only seems worse.
You can improve next year’s plans.
You can improve next year’s implementation.
For now, focus on doing the best you can in the situation you have.
What, then, can you do to untangle the knot and get as much done as possible, as well as possible, before the end of the year is here?

Here are a few ways to tighten your focus and increase your chances of success:

1. Remember – or get clear about – what your goal is.
2. Recall who you’re doing your work for, and what they consider success to be.
3. Get out your map (or, more likely, project plan) leading you to to the finish line.
4. See if it still makes sense, and if not, adjust it so it will work in present circumstances.
5. Figure out where you are on that map or project plan.
6. See and take the next most natural, most obvious step.
7. Repeat as needed.
And all of that is easy to say…but sometimes hard to do.
Wires can just get crossed, and the primary target lost in the confusion, disarray or shuffle.
When that happens find ways to go back to square one to review and recharge, renewing your strong sense of your target, purpose and path there.
Let extraneous things fall away, and focus your attention, resources and energy on what’s most important.
Here are just a few simple things that may help you regain perspective:
– Give yourself a break. Take a drive.
Sometimes when you see your office, home or city in the rear view mirror, perspective “magically” returns. Distance and movement away from present circumstances can bring much-needed perspective.
– Give yourself a break. Take a walk.
The same perspective-gaining principle applies here, except that you’re getting the big picture from nature, and immersion in it, even briefly.
jan@jgrichardsresults.com' About Jan Richards

Principal of J. G. Richards Consulting, Jan helps companies improve profitability and revenue as they decrease business complexity and costs. This occurs in many ways, including: streamlining business operations; project management for major change and process improvement teams; coaching leaders of major change programs; creating long-range visions and strategic plans. A WIC Board member, Jan oversees WIC's strategic initiatives and mentoring programs.

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