â€śLife balance is achieved when you are purposeful about how and where you spend your time, energy, and effort,â€ť explains Moran. â€śAt different times in your life, you will choose to focus on one area over another, and thatâ€™s perfectly fine, provided itâ€™s intentional. Life has different seasons, each with its own set of challenges and blessings. The 12 Week Year is a terrific process to help you live a life of intentional imbalance. Think about what could be different for you if every 12 weeks you focused on a few key areas in your life and made significant improvement.â€ť
Make sure youâ€™re committed, not merely interested. There is a humorous anecdote about commitments involving a chicken and a pig at breakfast time. The chicken has contributed the egg and is therefore merely interested in the breakfast; the pig, however, contributes the bacon, and is thus completely committed. Kept commitments benefit both parties involved by improving relationships, strengthening integrity, and building self-confidence. Commitments are powerful and, oftentimes, life changing.
â€śWhen youâ€™re merely interested in doing something, you do it only when circumstances permit, but when youâ€™re committed to something, you accept no excuses, only results,â€ť notes Moran. â€śThereâ€™s no denying that at that breakfast the pig is all in. And thatâ€™s how you must approach the commitments you take on as part of your 12 week plans.â€ť
Put hard (and short) deadlines on what you need to get done. The annual execution cycle many organizations embrace lulls people into believing that they can put things offâ€”critical activityâ€”and still accomplish what they desire, still achieve their goals. It sets one deadline, year-end, which in Januaryâ€”heck, even in Julyâ€”still feels too far away to spur you into action. But consider the rush of productivity that occurs when a deadline you have to meet draws closer.
â€śIn many companies, during the final five or six weeks of the year, there is a frantic push to end strong and to kick off the new year with gusto,â€ť says Moran. â€śItâ€™s an exciting and productive time. The problem is this urgency exists for just a handful of weeks in a 365 day yearâ€”but it doesnâ€™t have to. When a company sets deadlines for every 12 weeks rather than every 12 months, that excitement, energy, and focus happen all year long. And this strategy works with all goals, not just business goals.