"The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy." -- Martin Luther King Jr.
Finish Strong! These are two words that can create a powerful attitude for achievement in life, sport and business.
Finishing strong is the attitude of believing you can do something and having the courage and determination to see it through to the end.
The winner of any competition always comes from among those who finish. Not from among all those who try, or all those who mean well, but from among those who face the challenge and finish, and finish strong.
You can lose productivity in this last month as distractions take over. However, right now, building and sustaining momentum is one of the smartest things you can do to provide a fast start to the New Year.
Give it everything you've got. The bad news is that the time will fly. The good news is that you're the pilot.
Look at your year-to-date results to determine the effectiveness of your current strategies, as well as the quality, consistency and intensity of your efforts. If you are below target or unhappy with your overall performance then consider the remaining days as an opportunity to redeem yourself.
Ultimately, your ability to finish the year strong is all about "character." It's about turning a flashlight to your soul to inspect yourself for will, courage, conviction, and pride -- to see what you're really made of.
The following eight strategies can provide you with the motivational fuel and justification to ramp it up:
1. INSPIRE OTHERS -- Your performance can be seen as the sad consequence of neglect, poor character, lack of direction and ambition; or it can be an inspiring example of talent put to use in the intense pursuit of clearly defined year-end goals.
2. GET SERIOUS -- With a finite period of time breathing down your neck, you have no choice but to get serious, set crystal clear goals, raise the bar, step up your game and embrace a take-no-prisoners attitude. Serious professionals play to win and always finish strong.
3. INTENSIFY FOCUS -- Concentrate! Put all your eggs in one basket, and watch that basket closely. Knowing that both options and time are diminishing assets, your ability to focus on high pay-off activities becomes an obvious priority for securing a strong finish to the year.
4. ACT COURAGEOUSLY -- This is no time for indecision, doubt, excuses, blaming or procrastination. Now is the time for courage and boldness. It will accelerate the pace with which you drive results. Take risks and execute your year-end plans aggressively.
5. SET DEADLINES -- We work best under a self-determined or externally fixed deadline for achieving goals. By setting non-negotiable, challenging deadlines that drive you to deliver the goods, you virtually guarantee big, consistent wins right through the close of the year.
6. CREATE URGENCY -- To achieve your goals and to finish the year strong, you need a flame under your behind that ignites a performance explosion. You must take massive action every day and develop a sense of urgency and importance about what you are doing
7. MOVE FASTER -- The road to success has no speed limit. The old rules no longer apply. It's not the big that eats the small; it's the fast that eats the slow. The key to rapid, transformational results is to recognize the competitive power of speed in everything you do.
8. DON'T GIVE UP -- A comeback accepts disaster, laughs in its face, and crawls to his feet again. When you are down or below target, other people will write you off. Do not let them define you -- maintain your dignity and refuse to give up. You can do a little more each day than you think you can.
As you work toward the goal of finishing the year strong, you must understand that there will never be a day that won't require dedication, discipline, perseverance, accountability and the opportunity to execute relentlessly.
Time is your most valuable asset right now. Don't waste it. Sweat the small stuff as each day counts, and everything, regardless of size or intent, has bottom-line consequences that move you toward or away from your goals. Finish up the year proud of yourself. Look at this as "comeback time!"
Brad Larsen is a life coach and corporate consultant from Northern Utah. He can be reached at email@example.com.