A New Year's Resolution that Might Actually Work

We are now exactly 11 days into 2017, and for some of us that delicious opportunity to change, to improve, to realize a long dormant potential has… already vanished. Our enthusiasm for setting new goals has met the reality of our old habits. Some may persevere to February, a tiny few beyond. I admire so much those people.

This year, I decided to take a different approach to my annual renovation turned exercise in frustration. Instead of setting out the usual goals, eat less, read more, exercise consistently, I decided on creating a new mantra. Luckily for me, I happened to glance at my Twitter feed to discover this tweet @VeteranCrowd and an article attached therein.

The article, “7 Ways to Lead like a Navy SEAL” by Alice Vitiello contains some sound advice. The SEALs, legendary for many virtues, and despite only a small number of people able to endure the training, have much to teach us. Their wisdom, earned through the horrors of combat at its worst, applies to the man in the cubicle or the woman in the corner office, the intern and the CEO.

This particular article explained some of their philosophies, several of which I had seen during my own military experience or have read about in memoirs of their leaders. The gem of the article for me came not in the list of seven ways to lead, but in the final line of the article, spoken by 20-year veteran SEAL and SEAL instructor, Brian “Iron Ed” Hiner.

“Make it happen.” I had found my mantra for 2017.

People, all of us, can fall victim to our own desires for comfort and ease. The status quo, after all, loves itself, but the status quo is not the place for growth, rejuvenation, courage, and invention. As professionals, we may find the same in our organizations. ‘Tis far easier to keep doing it the ways we’ve always done.

Goals are good. Mindsets are better. What do you want to do this year? It won’t be easy, but let's shed the old habits, carve out a new mindset, and make it happen.

Thank you, dear readers. I will enjoy being on this arduous new year of change with you.


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