I used to start out a new year with life-changing resolutions. After enough years where results either didn't come within the year or didn't come at all I changed my projections to goals that I could complete within a year. To keep it at the top of my mind and easy to recall I put my 2015 goals into an easy "ABC" pneumonic.
"A" for Applying to More Competitions and Peer Reviews: As I spent much of 2014 moving my business I entered only two competitions this year. No awards at either but it left me with the feeling that I was falling behind in developing my personal portfolio. Putting my work out there for potential criticism as well as constructive feedback helps push me forward and makes sure that I'm always challenged. And the boost of confidence that comes with recognition or praise doesn't hurt either.
"B" for Bookings: I'm in my second year of business and I've lived the seasonal ups and downs that come in the photography industry. Instead of just going with the flow I'm laying out a plan to even out my bookings and assignments. The predictability would give me a little more peace of mind and help me plan the time I need to enter competitions and shows.
"C" for Conferences and Contacts: I have three big conferences planned for this year and a few monthly meet ups scheduled. There's nothing interacting with other professionals face-to-face. I can link up with those I met via social media and connect with new faces. For me so much networking gets done in a short period of time and I always get a boost of energy from the positive support that I usually find. It's also a great way to benchmark my business when I network with other small businesses.
What are your goals or resolutions for this year? Write them down and put them in a place where you can always get back to look at them. It's amazing how just one goal that stays on top of your mind and that can be accomplished within a year changes your perspective on success.