Five things I’ll stop doing next year (and what I’ll do instead)
I’ve been so moved by the work of people like, , , and — all who have inspired me this year to look at ways to let go as I journey in 2024 toward further clarity in my life.
That’s the word I’ve chosen for the year: clarity.
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It is defined as “the quality of being coherent and intelligible.” This epic quest for clarity is the reason I write in the first place and why I have a goal of publishing weekly in 2024. Fifty-two essays in an epic quest for clarity in the midst of tension.
Historically, I love to pile up goals and sling them onto my back as I enter each New Year’s epic march. But I’m pausing for just a moment in these early dawning days of the new year to think about what I won’t be bringing with me.
So here are the five things I will stop doing this year and what I’ll be doing instead.
1. Stop signing up for classes, coaches, and courses
Over the last few years, I’ve done over a dozen classes or workshops, signed up and completed courses, and worked with multiple coaches. I’ve graduated from altMBA and Write of Passage, both world-class courses that helped shape and form me to be both more curious and also to keep creating and writing online. I hired more than three coaches in 2023 and have spent thousands of dollars on classes and learning.
However positive these experiences have been (they were actually life-changing), I quickly realized I was becoming addicted more to learning than to doing.
In 2024, I’m focused on the epic reality and results of doing the work.
I need more routine because routine sets you free. More information is clogging my brain with branches and brush, quickly forming a dam I had no intention of creating.
I’m ready to tear down the dam and see what happens when the water starts flowing again. Doing the work for me looks like:
Coaching and Consulting with my Local Team: I need to spend deep and meaningful time with the team I lead and the team that helps generate cash flow in my business.
Learn with Intentionally: Learning doesn’t end, but it needs to be relentlessly specific for me. I’ll be spending time this year with ten organizations and ten leaders that I aspire to replicate and emulate.
Pause and Think: I need time just to be quiet and think. It’s as simple as that.
2. Stop traveling (as much)
I did an evaluation of my 2023 in an annual letter (which I plan to publish a version of here this month), and it quickly became apparent I had traveled far too much in 2023. I had well over 30 nights in hotels, which is just too much with my family and my current commitments. I was adding trips like it was a part of my job — and by the way, travel isn’t part of what I do. So this year, I’m focused on traveling only when necessary and will not add on excess trips that I excuse as learning trips. Instead, I’ll focus on time with those I love the most and connect virtually more often with others.
3. Stop buying books
I say this just about every year, and every year, I seem to break my own rule. But I have enough piles of unread books to read for the next few years. I won’t miss anything by catching up a little. Tied closely to stopping my coaching and course addiction, buying more books is not making me smarter or more intelligent. Reading them is what makes the difference.
My book purchases will shift to the “Wait List” on Amazon this year. I need to start reading.
4. Stop creating meetings
I’m not one to sit around and wait. I’ve not shied away from being the creator of any and all meetings, especially for the purpose of networking. I love meeting new people. What I’ve realized is I need to go beyond just an inch deep and a mile wide in my relationships in 2024. I need to stop adding more connections and start deepening my existing relationships.
I want to meet over and over again with a small group of people vs. meeting as many new people as I can in 2024. So, I’ll stop creating meetings with new people and start going deeper with a smaller group of key individuals I’ve identified for 2024.
5. Stop worrying
Just ask my wife, but I spend an inordinate amount of time worrying. About, frankly, everything. I have an excessive level of fear that bubbles below my ordinarily positive surface. It likes to come out in moments of stress and concern.
I have far too often put my trust in external things — but in 2024, I will stop worrying and embrace wholeness.
From one of my favorite Bible passages, here’s what I’ll be meditating upon most often in 2024:
“Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.” — Philippians 4:6-7
For other tremendous 2024 Anti-Resolution posts, check out a few more here:
Bonus: If you love annual planning, check out this guide here.
Thanks for reading,