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Why Entrepreneurs Should Not Set New Year’s Resolutions

New Year’s Resolutions Don’t Work

There are numerous research driven, fact based articles that outline why New Year’s resolutions don’t stick. There’s a ton of psychology stuff that explains this all, but I’m not going there right now.

We’re going to move forward with the premise that less than 10% of the population actually stick to their New Year’s resolutions for any significant amount of time.

And just to clarify here, I’m not talking about SMART goals, I’m talking about resolutions, about “lifestyle wants” and “should dos.”

So if resolutions are not the way to go, what’s the alternative?

The Concept of One Word

You’re an entrepreneur. I get it. Therefore, I bet you’re thinking “there’s no way One Word can encompass all I want to achieve in 2018.”

And I beg to differ.

I’m a list kind of gal. I like seeing down on paper what needs to get done and then crossing items off as I complete them. I actually have an actual bucket list and I still use a notebook to create a monthly budget and mind map my projects.

So you’d would think that writing out yearly resolutions would be right up my alley. And you’d be right.

However, this is my third year not setting New Year’s resolutions and not doing so has changed my business for the better.

Instead of listing out my “resolutions,” I chose a single focus word for the year. It was a word by which I would gauge all my actions when deciding whether a specific task would bring closer to my yearly goal or not. My yearly goal being that one word.

Focus

I first tried this in 2016 and my word was actually “Focus.”

I was born with an entrepreneurial spirit and while that means that I have an incredible vision for my business… it also means that I’ve got multiple incredible visions for multiple businesses. And despite liking to think that I can multitask… experience has shown me that having so many passion projects leads me to very little success in any one area.

I chose 2016 as the year during which I’d narrow my active projects down to one and decide where I wanted to put the bulk of my efforts.

Fit Jewess was that one project I decided to invest in.

So, I officially closed down the clothing store I had owned for eight years. I disabled the educational website that had teen empowerment workshops that I had been working on as a hobby. I stopped pursuing online affiliate marketing as a source of passive income.

Systems

In 2017 I picked the word “Systems.” As per the E-Myth, I’m a great Entrepreneur, a pretty good Technician, but I’ve got zero Manager in me. It was time to develop systems that I needed so that my business could run like a business rather than a mom-and-pop shop.

I’m amazed at how much I’ve learned about myself and how my business has evolved as I began to apply this concept by filtering my actions through the lens of “will this help me develop a long term system that’ll benefit my business or will it add to the chaos?” I didn’t always make the right decision, but it was a start.

Hustle

My word for 2018 is “Hustle.”

But enough about me.

Let’s talk about you. And you not making resolutions this year.

Three Steps to Choosing Your One Word

I’d love to invite you to choose your One Word.

This is no simple feat, and is not necessarily done in a single sitting (though it could be), but I’d like to break it down into 3 steps.

1. Consider what you want to accomplish in your business this year.

As an established business, you have a mission statement which is guided by its vision statement. These are both inspired by the reason you personally felt driven to start this business. Make sure that’s all up to date and if the direction of your business has changed at all, now’s the time to make any tweaks.

And as 2017 comes to a close and we welcome in 2018, I assume that  you have created a marketing plan for the new year and that you’ve outlined what you want to achieve in 2018.

Now’s the time to ensure that the goals you’ve listed are aligned with your Why, so take a few moments to review it all. To make sure that everything you’ve written on your goals list brings you closer to fulfilling your mission and bringing you closer to your vision. 

2. Narrow those ideas to a single word.

Your Why inspires your vision and mission which in turn dictate your goals. Now it’s time to sum up all of those goals into a single word. Look back and see where you struggled last year and look forward and see where you want to strengthen your business next year.

Your One Word will encompass all of your goals and will get to the root of what you feel you want to accomplish this year. Some ideas might be Loyalty (if you want this year to focus on customer service), Execution or Productivity (if you feel like that’s been lacking from you and your team in the last year), or Recognition (if your main goal is to establish your brand in the marketplace), etc…

Create a list of words that you feel match up with your goals/mission in Step 1 and speak each one out loud. Tune in and notice how you feel with each word. Does it just sound like you’re reading out of a thesaurus, or do you feel a little tug in your heart that seems to be saying, “this is it.”

If that last part feels a little too “lovey dovey” for you, that’s fine. Process it in whichever way you like, but your One Word should be one that resonates strongly with you and that almost feels like it’s yours.

When I first heard this idea, I thought it was kinda ludicrous. Well, not the concept, but the verbiage of having a word speak to you. But in my three years of doing this, each time, it’s like the word has leapt out at me and said “I’m yours for the year.”

And each time it’s only brought me closer to the business that I’m looking to build.

3. Commit to your One Word.

You and your One Word will be married for the year so make sure you’re comfortable with commitment.

Put your One Word up – in your workplace, at home, on the dashboard of your car. Let it be visible wherever you are and let that One Word be the filter by which you make business decisions. Ask yourself if the choice you’re about to make, if the task you’re about to do, if the relationship you’re about to initiate is going to support your One Word and bring you closer or further from your vision for 2018.

Let your One Word represent the year 2018.

Try it. It’s not like you have anything to lose. Besides for New Year’s Resolutions.

Sara Kupfer
Sara Kupfer, founder of Fit Jewess, is a fitness coach with the mission of empowering Jewish women worldwide through movement and fostering a community united through body positive and weight neutral fitness. She is a CrossFit L1 trainer and coaches girls and women in person and online. She encourages her clients to view exercise as a way to feel more confident by increasing energy, gaining strength and discovering how amazingly capable their bodies are.

Top Entrepreneurs Who Didn’t Get a Business Degree

Many people wonder if they can succeed in the business world without a business degree. Well, we’re here to tell you that there are plenty of successful people out there who never earned a business degree–some never even finished high school! The world is out there for your taking. If you’ve got the passion and the drive, anything is possible, degree or not.

 Coco Chanel – Chanel

“In 1910, she opened her first business, a hat shop, also in Paris. She later established boutiques in Biarritz and Deauville, this time making and selling clothes. Her designs were hugely successful and, by the 1920s, Coco had debuted her iconic perfume: Chanel No. 5. Five years later, she launched the classic Chanel suit (the collarless jacket and fitted skirt). Coco is notably the only fashion designer on Time magazine’s list of the 100 most influential people of the 20th century. She is credited with liberating women of the early 20th century from the confines of the corset, and introducing simpler fashion, lines and fabrics that endure today.” –(Daily Worth)

 

Howard Schultz – Starbucks

“Brooklyn native Schultz attended Northern Michigan University on a football scholarship and earned a degree in communications. After graduation, he started working in the coffee business as a salesman for Hammarplast, which sold European coffee makers in the U.S. Eventually, he became the company’s director of sales, which was when he discovered a small Seattle chain called Starbucks. In 1982, he joined Starbucks and the rest is history.” –(USA Today)

 

 

Alexa Hirschfeld – Paperless Post

“Hirschfeld recieved a B.A. degree in Classics at Harvard University in 2006. The e-vite service was conceived in 2007 by her younger brother, James, while the Harvard undergrad was planning his 21st birthday party. He then called his sister, who had planned to leave her first job as an editorial assistant at CBS, where she was often stuck opening mail. ‘I wanted to be in something that was not figured out yet,’ Alexa said in a 2011 interview with Cosmopolitan. ‘I imagined that if I were, there would be more room for creativity.’–(TIME)

 

 

Matt Mullenweg – WordPress

“Matt Mullenweg started WordPress, which now powers around 22% of the web, yet he dropped out of college and began working at CNET Networks from 2004 to 2005, before quitting that to found Automattic, the business behind WordPress.com.”–(Gentleman’s Journal)

 

Oprah Winfrey – The Oprah Winfrey Show

“Oprah was offered [a] job as an on-air reporter in Baltimore. The only problem was that the job started a few months before her graduation. Ultimately, she chose the job (from which she was fired), sacrificing her communications and performing arts degree. She soldiered on, working a morning talk show in Baltimore and then hosting another in Chicago before hitting the big time. The Oprah Winfrey Show was the highest-rated talk show in American history, earning 17 Daytime Emmys. She was named the richest African-American of the 20th century by Forbes in 2009 and is one of only two black female billionaires in the world.” –(Daily Worth)

David Karp – Tumblr

“The creator of Tumblr (the 9th most visited site in the US), despite never even graduating high school. He had dropped out of Bronx Science high school in 2001 to be home-schooled, and never received a high school diploma. Karp is now worth an estimated $200 million.”–(Gentleman’s Journal)

 

 

 

 

Sara Blakely – Spanx

“A onetime door-to-door fax machine salesperson, Sara Blakely invested $5,000 to come up with something to wear under white slacks. She initially shilled her new invention, which became shapewear brand Spanx, on the sales floor at various Neiman Marcus stores. In 2000, Oprah Winfrey called to add Spanx to her famous Favorite Things episode. Today, Spanx sells its undergarments, leggings, and maternity wear in 65 countries. “–(Forbes)

 

 

 

 

 

Shani
Shani is a photographer and content creator from Los Angeles. She graduated from UC Santa Barbara with a Communication degree, which she puts to good use by connecting with all the incredible Jewish organizations and the people who support them. With a deep pride in her Jewish roots and an Israeli background, Shani hopes to share the power and potential of Jewish innovation and connection with the world.

5 Free Marketing Tools for Every Entrepreneur

If you’re just getting started in the world of entrepreneurship, you probably don’t have a giant marketing budget. So we’ve compiled a list of free marketing tools you should use in order to grow and develop your business! Not only will they help you grow your business, but these tools will also help you save time and money.

1. MailChimp

If you’ve ever listened to an NPR podcast, you’ve probably heard an ad for MailChimp. As one of the most popular tools for email marketing, MailChimp is incredibly user friendly and beneficial for maintaining and growing an audience. They also have a great page dedicated to teaching you how to maximize all that it has to offer.

Features include:

  • Integrating with Facebook and Instagram to gain new customers and subscribers
  • Adjustments based on feedback from MailChimp reports
  • Customizing emails based on purchase data
  • Automation tools that will save time and headache!

2. Canva

Today, aesthetics are almost as important as the product or service itself. Canva is another incredibly user friendly tool to create designs that will be appealing and enticing to your customers. The site also has fantastic articles with advice about design.

Features include:

  • A very easy to use drag and drop system
  • A variety of font combinations, templates, icons, images and illustrations
  • A color palette generator (you can select colors from images you use on your website)
  • A photo editor page

3. Buffer

Social media can be incredibly overwhelming and exhausting. With so many different accounts to keep track of and different etiquettes in each of them, managing it is a job in and of itself. Buffer helps ease the strain of it all.

Features include:

  • Automation and post scheduling
  • Manage all accounts from this one space
  • Crafting updates for each social media channel separately
  •  Data and performance analysis

4. Yoast

If you use WordPress, Yoast is a must for tracking and optimizing every aspect of your site. Yoast also offers great SEO courses that are essential to understanding how to gain more exposure in the online world.

Features include:

  • Assistance in meta description
  • SEO ranking and improvement through readability score
  • Analytics and feedback
  • All in all–helps attract more people from google and social media!

5. SumoMe

To grow your site even more, you’ve got to check out SumoMe.

Features include:

  • Integration with your email marketing tool–ehem, MailChimp, ehem
  • Content and visitor tracking
  • More effective share buttons
  • The ability to design less invasive popups and gain more subscribers

Of course, there are hundreds of apps and online tools out there, and we hope that this inspires you to get started on making good use of them if you haven’t already!

Shani
Shani is a photographer and content creator from Los Angeles. She graduated from UC Santa Barbara with a Communication degree, which she puts to good use by connecting with all the incredible Jewish organizations and the people who support them. With a deep pride in her Jewish roots and an Israeli background, Shani hopes to share the power and potential of Jewish innovation and connection with the world.