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"A Fresh Perspective on Priorities as We Enter the New Year" guest article for the Athena


By Danna Lewis, COO | Athena Alliance

There are a lot of articles that go up this time of year that speak to goals and priorities and clean slates. The idea of starting fresh—that you can conquer just about anything—is one of the most exciting things about a New Year. There are twelve months before you, and you’re in (seemingly) complete control over what happens in each. Opportunities are endless.

Naturally, this time of year sparks moments of reflection, anticipation, and motivation. What can you do next year that capitalizes on this year’s accomplishments or serves as a completely new target? Your goals may have to do with the smaller moments of the day, carving out precious time for yourself amidst the hustle of the Monday to Friday. They may be physical—you’re going to move, to train your body, to climb that mountain, whatever your personal mountain may be. Or your goals may be professional… reaching the c-suite, having the self-awareness to shape yourself into a stronger leader, or achieving a board seat.

Whatever your goals may be, they will require discipline and the ability to prioritize.


Your priorities are whatever you’re doing now. I’m not just talking about reading this article—I’m talking about your current week. What are you up to? What is sucking up your time?

For a powerful exercise in revealing your priorities, take 10 minutes and view your calendar for today and the past week. Write down everything you were doing—every meeting, every commitment. Think back, beyond what’s written in your calendar, and jot down everything you can remember about your week. Talking on the phone to an old friend? Going for a run? Baking holiday cookies? Picking your kids up from school? Working late into the night? Whatever it may be—write it down. Put it on paper, get it before your eyes, make it real.

That list. Whatever it may be. Regardless of what you said your priorities were, what you actually spent your time on is what you (consciously or unconsciously) made your priorities.

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