Finishing Line by Bichuas (E. Carton)

I’ve been told I read too much into things. Usually by the same people who tell me I overthink and worry too much. I ignore these people.

In my book, there’s no such thing as overthinking. You either think or you don’t. It’s not a dirty word. It doesn’t get you into trouble. And when you’re done, you feel as if made the best choice with the information you had at the time, so there’s no reason to feel regret.

That’s why as I step out on this venture into a new full-time position at an American corporate juggernaut, I will have no regrets. It may go well. It may go … not so well. But I’ve thought about it from every angle humanly possible, and I’m happy with this new path I’m taking.

Last year, during the Year of The Snake, I made an effort to be more spontaneous. Think less and wing it more. It was a mixed bag. I didn’t hate that approach, but turning off my brain proved impossible. Like trying to roll molasses uphill during a heatwave.

So as we enter the Year of The Horse — more specifically, the Year of the Wood Horse — I’ve adapted my decision-making style. I’ve created goals for my business, my career and my life, but I am also ready to take advantage of the unexpected opportunities and quick developments that this year predicts. I’m a thinker who needs to digest information before I spring into action, but I don’t believe this is a hindrance. I’m determined to make it work for me in a year that will prove to be fast-paced and challenging.

Now, to be clear, this not a year to be reckless. According to others more well-versed on this topic than I, it’s best to be both decisive and assured. So nix the procrastination, but not the analysis.

So with that in mind, I’ve decided to keep my new year freelance business goals to three pillars:

1. Develop A Brand Strategy

Taking a page from Mahesh Mohan, I’m diving into the brand (re)development stage of my business this year. I plan to work with a pro and make some hard decisions about where I want my freelancing to go or if I’m happy to keep it where it is, but make it sharper and more productive.

I’m ready to take that leap and execute a strategy that will not only benefit my business, but my life overall. After all, “A career is a continuous quest for greater harmony between who you are and what you do.” **

2. Take Courses To Improve My Business Skills

I’m no slouch when it comes to business. Yet sadly, for the last 5 years I’ve butted heads with numerous people in the business world who insisted on implementing failed tactic after failed tactic because they either A) didn’t know diddly squat about the practical side of business, or B) only focused on short-term gains that satisfied their egos. Anyone who reads Meeting Boy’s Twitter feed or Tumblr blog knows that the business world is littered with these types.

Well, I don’t want to be one of them. So whether it’s classes in Entrepreneurship, Project Management or the latest tricks in Adobe InDesign, I’m determined to take my experience and combine it with tested theories that will only leave me prepared to tackle bigger projects with greater skill and assurance.

3. Exercise Twice Per Week

I know this one seems like it doesn’t belong here as a goal, but whether you’re a full-time freelancer or pulling double duty with a day job and side hustle, you know it’s easy to get lost in the throes of stress and unhealthy diets. But I’m not committing to anything huge this year. I tried a new fitness boxing routine last year, and although it was nice to learn a new skill, the lack of visible progress left me deflated.

So it’s time for a new strategy. I’m not 22 years old. I know what works for me now. No gym memberships. No pre-dawn workouts. No listening to idiots who try to force this square peg into a round hole. I just want to exercise, relieve some stress and improve my focus. It’ll be good for my health, my life and my peace of mind. And who can argue with that.

*******

That’s it, folks. Those are my three goals for the Year of the Horse. Believe it or not, they’re all equally lofty. With a new day job on the horizon and a fun bucket list to remind me that life isn’t all about punching a clock, I’m going into the New Year with fun hopes and a heartfelt calm. Now let’s see where this Horse takes us!

What do you plan to tackle in the Year of the Horse?

** quote from Carole Kanchier