As millions of people are making New Year's resolutions, just as many are wondering if they have what it takes to keep them in 2015. NBA Member Team executive Eve Wright Taylor successfully put an end to her pattern of breaking New Year's resolutions. How did the Vice President and Associate General Counsel of the Miami HEAT do it? She reconciled answers to three questions that helped her to get serious about, and even modify, her resolutions.
What was the result? She confronted pre-diabetic health markers and is now contending as an accomplished fitness competitor. She also followed her dream of entering the sports industry and earned a top spot as a female executive in arguably the hottest professional sports franchise in the world. Now, a renowned motivational speaker and mentor, Taylor shares these questions to help others set themselves up for success in keeping their resolutions in 2012.
Eve Wright Taylor, AVP & General Counsel, Miami HEAT
- Why am I doing this? Taylor says the key to keeping a resolution lies in your motive and your resolve. For her, the motive to lose weight and get in shape was a matter of life and quality of life. Like many others, she included "losing weight" on her resolution list every year. But when Taylor came to grips with the black and white, life or death, do or die implications associated with her failure to do so, her resolve to achieve that goal completely changed.Whether it's losing weight, changing careers, getting married or starting a business, Taylor recommends that you start by figuring out why you want to do it. It doesn't have to be a literal matter of life or death but your motivation should be something that you feel strongly about (as opposed to what other people feel strongly about) or something that will positively impact the quality of your life. And, as Taylor puts it, "if you don't have any skin in the game or any carrot to help you stay committed, then you may want to rethink if you should focus your time and energy on that particular resolution at all.
- What am I afraid of? Coming to grips with her fear was a second essential step for Taylor. She learned from the many broken resolutions of years past that all change includes an element of fear. Sometimes people discover they are actually afraid of some part of the success they seek. By facing those fears, and having a plan to deal with them early on, Taylor creates a framework for success. It's easy to stay committed when challenges are few and far in between. But it's the setbacks and plateaus that start to wreak havoc on your confidence and resolve; that's when acknowledging the fear and remembering the motives fuels resolve to push past the fear. It is that type of success framework that bolsters her motivation to take one more step toward her goals - even when it doesn't seem possible.
- Is it worth it? Prior to developing a game plan-a list of strategies and corresponding action steps that will make achieving the goal possible, Taylor assesses whether the resolution is worth "it." This usually comes down to an old fashioned pros and cons checklist. She uses the checklist to assess risk versus reward, real or perceived obstacles, and other variables that impact her strategies and action steps. For certain resolutions, she realized the answer to the "is it worth it" question was 'no;' they called for action steps and compromises that she knew she couldn't make...not realistically. So, she made adjustments to find the solution that worked best for her-she came up with a method and a means of accomplishing her resolutions that were worth it.
Taylor says "before the ink dries on your resolutions list, take a moment to flesh out what you want and how to get there the same way you would prepare for a big presentation at work or a strategy to snag all the "almost free" stuff when the doors swing open at a Black Friday sale!"
Answering these questions gave Taylor the resolve she needed to follow through on her resolutions. Since then, her track record of success has ranged from the corporate law firm setting to the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) and, now, a Member Team of the National Basketball Association (NBA). She has been profiled and featured in various publications, including the Atlanta Post, Atlanta Tribune, Black Enterprise Magazine, Success Magazine and The Golf Channel television network. And, she has received several awards, among, them The Thurgood Marshall Fund Distinguished Young Leader Award and the National Bar Association's 40 Under 40 Nations Best Advocates.