The end of 2011 was a mixture of absolute holiday perfection and complete technological mayhem for me. When last we left the story of my laptop disaster, Lenovo was sending a technician with a new motherboard in mid-January.

However, the very next day after I posted my story about “How A Laptop Meltdown Forced Me to Create Balance,” I received a phone call from Lenovo’s tech support saying that “middle of January” had turned into the middle of February.

Once I stopped alternating between hysterical laughter and mild crying (LOL) I decided that enough was enough and initiated return proceedings for the Lenovo laptop that was supposed to be the greatest thing since sliced bread.

Moments later, I had ordered a new Macbook Pro and was driving to the Apple Store to pick up a new iPad (upon which I’m writing this post, as I await the new laptop). I’m starting the New Year right!

How can you start the new year right? Follow these three steps:
1) Forgive yourself for everything and give yourself permission to succeed in 2012.
Before you head too far into 2012, forgive yourself for anything that didn’t go the way you wanted in 2011. Learn whatever you can from past mistakes, and then let them go so you can move on. Then, give yourself permission to succeed in 2012.

2) Toss out whatever isn’t working.
Your purge should include outdated systems, inefficient tactics, and underperforming strategies. Look at everything- your marketing, your products and services, your customer service, even yourself. What’s not working that you can either improve or get rid of?

3) Work some new stuff into your structure.
At the end of each year, I take some time to look over the past twelve months and see what worked and what didn’t, but at the beginning of each year, I come up with new stuff to work in. For example, this year, I’ll have a new radio show, a new web site, new products, new training programs, and I’m even working on some new time management strategies I’ll be testing out.

Over the years, I’ve discovered that there’s a fascinating split between those who, like me, embrace a new year as a fresh start and a new beginning, and those who see January 1 as just another day.

If you’re one of those who don’t see the point in New Year’s Resolutions or in making the new year a starting point for an exciting time in your business, I’d like to encourage you to give it a try and experience what it feels like when you give yourself permission to wipe the slate clean at the beginning of this new year.

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