• Author:Ben Jones
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I resolutely resolve not to making resolutions – I focus on strategy instead

If I made New Year resolutions, it would be not to make any more New Year resolutions! I have never been their biggest fan. I take the view that if something is important to do or to start to do on 1st January, then it is just as important on 31st December.

I know that a New Year offers a new start, as does a new job or a new home but I think that New Year resolutions are often flawed in two ways. They are built on a false timeline with a fixation on making changes on an arbitrary date and they often focus on process not outcomes; I will exercise more, I will give up chocolate etc rather than I will live a more healthy lifestyle or I will lose a stone in weight and keep it off.

There is of course a danger of me picking on resolutions and being a killjoy to the millions of people who have set themselves resolutions for the year ahead and are committed to making important changes in their lives. I however prefer to focus on having a proper strategy for the year ahead, which is in line with my strategy for life as a whole. To help with this I continue to refer to the excellent ‘Winners” by the equally excellent Alastair Campbell and his suggested focus on how to get strategy right using the handy acronym OST (objective, strategy and tactics).

This is my OST for my life and therefore the year ahead;

  • Objective – happiness and wellbeing
  • Strategy – maintaining the perfect life-work balance
  • Tactics – working for myself, writing something meaningful every day, prioritising my home and family life over everything else (e.g. sleep in own bed every night, be at home to put my daughter to bed etc), exercising regularly, making time to relax and enjoy things I enjoy (e.g. LFC, Red Sox, watching other sport, music, reading etc), being engaged in politics.


My lifestyle strategy (not a phrase I have ever said or written before!) is all about getting and keeping the balance right; something I’ve thought about a lot over recent times. I believe that success in life is about making good choices and focusing on the things that really matter. In the rest of the year ahead I will keep looking at my OST – which is saved in my notes on iPad, iPhone and Macbook – and checking that I am doing the business. I will use this blog to provide a progress report.

In the meantime, I wish everyone who has made resolutions every success with them but to be a winner in Alastair Campbell’s eyes you need to focus on strategy, strategy, strategy. I resolutely agree.

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