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Suggestions for the New Year

As I write this column, we are nearly through the month of December, thank goodness. I decided to review the January columns that I have written for the last seven or eight years. I’ve selected the most pertinent items for inclusion in this year’s January column. Perhaps you will find some use for one or more of these ideas during the new year. Let me suggest that you take a couple of hours of quiet time in the new year either alone or with your closest confidante and decide on the kind of year that would most satisfy you. Your success or failure in 2021 will be decided by your willingness to put in the effort.

Suggestions That You Might Find Valuable in 2021

Decide that you are going to speak to people whenever an opportunity presents itself. Many people live in a lonely environment; i.e. widowed individuals, isolated men and women, senior citizens, and certainly a lot of young people, especially those who are unemployed. A friendly or cheerful word from you could be welcome, especially if accompanied by a warm and genuine smile. We have all heard the old bromide “that it is easier and less demanding to smile than to frown.”

It’s said the sweetest sound to anyone’s ear is the sound of their own name. So use a person’s name when you are greeting them.

Strive to be friendly; it’s a quality that virtually everyone likes in others. Most of us respond better to friendly, kind people. Accept compliments with a simple “thank you”. Believe in yourself.

Be willing to change your mind, when you realize that you are mistaken. Typically there are three sides to any disagreements: yours, the other person’s and the right one. Be willing to laugh at your own mistakes. It helps others to see your playful side. Give credit when it’s due.

Always strive to do your very best regardless of the task. There is a great YouTube wherein the retired four star Seal Admiral William H. McRaven speaks of the importance of making your bed the first thing every morning. He says fixing your bed will serve you well throughout the day. And besides however well or poorly your day went, you can climb into a well-made bed every night. Display pride in your work.

Everyone deserves to be treated with respect. Learn to listen to the other person. S/he may be a lot smarter or more experienced than you.

Always do your best to hear another person’s point of view. Periodically review your goals.

Charles Dickens wrote “My advice is to never do tomorrow what you can do today. Procrastination is the thief of time”. Does that speak to you?

To achieve competence you need to believe that you can achieve your goals. You need to determine your set of goals even if they are still a “work in progress”. And you should ask your friends for their help and encouragement.

Keep your promises. Strive to be a better person every day. Life’s a gift; share more. Be generous with your praise and cautious with criticism.

Read a lot. Visit your local book stores; see how much they have to offer, regardless of your interests.

I have found a number of John Maxwell’s books quite interesting. A friend of mine recommended a book called “What the most successful people do before breakfast”; which I also recommend highly.

Watch programs like “ted talks”; they can expand your knowledge of all kinds of information in a conveniently short format. I believe that their presenters are limited to 15 minutes, so they really get to the point of their presentation quickly.

Learn to trust others; you may regret it occasionally, but remember, trust helps to build lasting relationships. I once heard an excellent consultant say there are three ways to gain someone’s trust—be positive, be positive and again be positive.

A good sense of humor is invaluable in life. A good level of patience is also essential to achieve some success. Don’t forget to be humble.

Stop comparing yourself with others. Stop putting yourself down. Associate with positive, supportive people. Be true to yourself. I am convinced that a lack of urgency is a formidable obstacle to your success. If you hate your job, start looking for a new job. Realize that you have greatness within you. As the Army says, “Be all you can be”. Don’t let the world control you.

For Your Consideration: “None of us, including me, ever do great things. But we can do small things with great love, and together we can do something wonderful.” Mother Teresa

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has”. Margaret Mead, famed Cultural anthropologist


BEST WISHES TO YOU AND YOUR LOVED ONES FOR A MERRY, BLESSED CHRISTMAS, FOLLOWED BY A HAPPY, HEALTHY AND PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR.
I would again like to thank my two wonderful editors: my wife, SANDEE WASK FITZGERALD and my daughter, ERYNN FITZGERALD. They have been of great help to me over this past year.
James F. Fitzgerald is president of James F. Fitzgerald & Associates, Inc., a Naperville based senior executive and career transition firm. Jamesffitzgeraldassociates.com jamesffitz37@hotmail.com

Suggestions for the New Year

As I write this column, we are nearly through the month of December, thank goodness. I decided to review the January columns that I have written for the last seven or eight years. I’ve selected the most pertinent items for inclusion in this year’s January column. Perhaps you will find some use for one or more of these ideas during the new year. Let me suggest that you take a couple of hours of quiet time in the new year either alone or with your closest confidante and decide on the kind of year that would most satisfy you. Your success or failure in 2021 will be decided by your willingness to put in the effort.

Suggestions That You Might Find Valuable in 2021

Decide that you are going to speak to people whenever an opportunity presents itself. Many people live in a lonely environment; i.e. widowed individuals, isolated men and women, senior citizens, and certainly a lot of young people, especially those who are unemployed. A friendly or cheerful word from you could be welcome, especially if accompanied by a warm and genuine smile. We have all heard the old bromide “that it is easier and less demanding to smile than to frown.”

It’s said the sweetest sound to anyone’s ear is the sound of their own name. So use a person’s name when you are greeting them.

Strive to be friendly; it’s a quality that virtually everyone likes in others. Most of us respond better to friendly, kind people. Accept compliments with a simple “thank you”. Believe in yourself.

Be willing to change your mind, when you realize that you are mistaken. Typically there are three sides to any disagreements: yours, the other person’s and the right one. Be willing to laugh at your own mistakes. It helps others to see your playful side. Give credit when it’s due.

Always strive to do your very best regardless of the task. There is a great YouTube wherein the retired four star Seal Admiral William H. McRaven speaks of the importance of making your bed the first thing every morning. He says fixing your bed will serve you well throughout the day. And besides however well or poorly your day went, you can climb into a well-made bed every night. Display pride in your work.

Everyone deserves to be treated with respect. Learn to listen to the other person. S/he may be a lot smarter or more experienced than you.

Always do your best to hear another person’s point of view. Periodically review your goals.

Charles Dickens wrote “My advice is to never do tomorrow what you can do today. Procrastination is the thief of time”. Does that speak to you?

To achieve competence you need to believe that you can achieve your goals. You need to determine your set of goals even if they are still a “work in progress”. And you should ask your friends for their help and encouragement.

Keep your promises. Strive to be a better person every day. Life’s a gift; share more. Be generous with your praise and cautious with criticism.

Read a lot. Visit your local book stores; see how much they have to offer, regardless of your interests.

I have found a number of John Maxwell’s books quite interesting. A friend of mine recommended a book called “What the most successful people do before breakfast”; which I also recommend highly.

Watch programs like “ted talks”; they can expand your knowledge of all kinds of information in a conveniently short format. I believe that their presenters are limited to 15 minutes, so they really get to the point of their presentation quickly.

Learn to trust others; you may regret it occasionally, but remember, trust helps to build lasting relationships. I once heard an excellent consultant say there are three ways to gain someone’s trust—be positive, be positive and again be positive.

A good sense of humor is invaluable in life. A good level of patience is also essential to achieve some success. Don’t forget to be humble.

Stop comparing yourself with others. Stop putting yourself down. Associate with positive, supportive people. Be true to yourself. I am convinced that a lack of urgency is a formidable obstacle to your success. If you hate your job, start looking for a new job. Realize that you have greatness within you. As the Army says, “Be all you can be”. Don’t let the world control you.

For Your Consideration: “None of us, including me, ever do great things. But we can do small things with great love, and together we can do something wonderful.” Mother Teresa

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has”. Margaret Mead, famed Cultural anthropologist


BEST WISHES TO YOU AND YOUR LOVED ONES FOR A MERRY, BLESSED CHRISTMAS, FOLLOWED BY A HAPPY, HEALTHY AND PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR.
I would again like to thank my two wonderful editors: my wife, SANDEE WASK FITZGERALD and my daughter, ERYNN FITZGERALD. They have been of great help to me over this past year.
James F. Fitzgerald is president of James F. Fitzgerald & Associates, Inc., a Naperville based senior executive and career transition firm. Jamesffitzgeraldassociates.com This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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