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Sharing what I know about type-based illustration while helping creatives do their best work

Four Questions To Help Plan A Successful 2017

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2017 is moving really fast.  

Usually people use the new year to start afresh, start something new, start becoming a “better person” and attempt at committing to a New Years resolution. That’s why I don’t set resolutions, they require something in your life to change which then people end up failing to keep. Whereas a goal is a desired result. A goal is a stronger driving force than setting resolutions. 

I love what Gary Vee says:

“Ideas are worthless unless you are executing it”

It’s easy to dream, but much harder to execute. And I’ve been thinking about (sadly, not enough action) back in November 2016 how I want 2017 to pan out. A podcast episode by Todd Henry gave me a brand new and more thought-provoking way to plan 2017. This wasn’t a 30 min thought exercise, I spent close to two hours writing down my answers and by the end of the session I felt pumped. 

I want to share with you my answers in the hopes to inspire you to think about your own goals this year.

So I was asked:

What do you want to experience this year?

First answer, more numbers in my bank account! (says a lot about me right? haha) no seriously, at first I was joking with myself. Yes money will be “nice” and there’s a long-winding debate about “money being the root of all evil”. But without money how will I pay for my site's hosting? Pay for art materials or storage space and online courses. The idea is you should respect money and what it can do for you, but not treat getting money as the goal. 

So I decided not to retract what I said.

I added, I want to experience deeper and meaningful relationships both in the offline and online spaces. I want to be around more of the right people, who will not mince words and intend to push you to create your best work. Along with that experience—greater confidence in speaking. I’m not a pro, nor am I the most talkative person you’ll meet. But I want to experience conversations that will propel me forward, that will light a fire under me and give me more determination to pursue my goals.

Where do I want to go?

Now, I instantly thought of travelling. I made it clear to myself that travelling is low on my priority list. I’m not working so I can travel and come back on the grind again. I don’t see that as a great experience. 

A great travelling experience for me is the ability to choose any day of any month and fly. You’re not limited to the time you can spend out there and there is no boss when you come back. You’re in control, but it’s also your responsibility to know how much time off you can afford to take. That’s why when I answered this question I knew travelling is what I want to do (someday) but it’s not something I’m working towards right now. 

What do I want to learn?

In my head, there were a lot of things. Too many things and not enough important things. I’ll list out some of topics I would like to study:

  • Branding and visual identity design
  • Typeface design
  • Digital marketing and sales 
  • Creative entrepreneurship
  • Building email lists
  • What exercises will give me a six pack

The biggest topic for me however goes back to my answer to the first question, and it’s how can I serve the people who need my services and how can I form meaningful relationships with the right people. A key to great business is people. So if i’m able to understand the needs and struggles of my audience, i’ll be able to provide more value through my work and ultimately help them become the best version of themselves. 

Man, now I’m pumped again! Next question!

What do I need to change to achieve the results I want?

This question was deep. 

I answered all these questions based on gut reaction. For those that know (which is likely the majority of you reading) I’m an introvert, so I process information differently to other personality types. I’m slower to answer but analytical in my thoughts, which means I’m considering both party’s feelings and the result of my answer. I think more about what I’m going to say than saying it, which means my thoughts are more meaningful. I speak only when spoken to and share only when I have something important to share. I love silence and I work best in solitary. 

These are not traits I want to change nor is it necessary. When I realised this is who I am, I accepted that fact and worry way less now about what others think of me. I can’t deny that if I desire a successful year, there are subtle changes that should be made. 

  • I want to prove to myself that if I wake up early, I will achieve better results.
  • I simply want to do more with the time I have, than think about the time I wish I had.
  • I want to try to think more out loud and share my thoughts with my peers.  
 

 

If you haven’t yet thought about what you hope to achieve before the year ends, it’s not too late. And I encourage you to sit down and spend some time so by December 2017, you can review the year and say yes, I achieved what I set out to do.

So tell me, what is the one thing you want to experience this year? 

Tweet me your thoughts @jaytenart

I'd love to hear.

Jonathan