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Try this Approach to Forming New Habits

Thursday, January 11, 2018 9:38 AM | Tom Williams (Administrator)












Tom Williams

Capacity Builder

Tom@nonprofnetwork.org




With the New Year comes a perfect time to wipe the slate clean and take some new approaches to better ourselves.  This is great time slot at the beginning of a new calendar to consider your professional development. We know that enhanced professionals (at staff or board level) will positively impact the accomplishments of organizations.  Higher skilled leaders get enhanced results.


Now that that ball has finally dropped in Times Square, a fresh look at your personal professional development is in order.


You may know that we at Nonprofit Network facilitate a lot of workshops. I’ve observed during those sessions that there is always someone who is overloaded with new and different. They are overwhelmed by all the ways they could implement the information and need assistance in identifying next steps that are achievable. 


So my recommendation is to keep it simple. 


Identify a single, key skill that you feel will impact your development. Mastering that skill in 2018 will make a difference.


I’ve waited until now to introduce you to the hard part.  New skills will bolster your performance as you implement them, but the truly valuable impact only comes when you have mastered them. 


Mastery requires changing your behavior.  Changing your behavior starts with forming new habit.  And habits take time.  


Most people expect a short journey to mastery and when it takes more time than anticipated, the effort is reduced, or maybe frustration stops the effort entirely.  Workshops are fantastic venues for exploring new skills, but the full potential comes from practicing what was learned and implementing the skills every day.


Habits were once thought to be created over a three week period.  However, recent studies now tell us true “habits” will actually take 66 days or more to form.  Yes, that’s slightly over two MONTHS (not weeks). Don’t despair! Creating the new and powerful habit will be worth it. It will be a skill that not only immediately benefits your organization, but one that will stay with you for the rest of your life.  


When to start?  I really like the old saying of the best time to plant a shade tree—the best answer: 20 years ago.  The very next best answer is TODAY.  If you start now, by the time our snow is gone for good, you will have a new habit.  


Coming up are some workshops that may address the skill you identify.  Need to focus on self care?  We've got you covered.  Want to improve employee management and retention?  Not a problem. Ready to elevate the quality of your board management?  We've got that too.


I’m not going to be so bold as to tell which skill you need to acquire. You know what it is already. Say it out loud. Now take a deep breath and get started identifying what you can do today on your journey to mastery.


Touch bases with us if you want to talk it through.




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