setting yourself up for successThe New Year is rapidly approaching. Super rapidly!

A sure sign? The 2019 Spin Sucks 30-day Communications Challenge has been announced!

Not to mention, The Communicator’s Playbook (v.2).

These are the tools you need to help set you up for success in 2019.

Exciting, right?

(Sidenote: I may or may not try to focus on my shameless self-promotion tactics in the New Year…)

But apart from these two opportunities, what are you doubling down on next year?

What’s been working, what hasn’t?

Some may lean toward the idea that if it’s not broken, don’t try to fix it. But we work in a space that is constantly evolving. Status quo isn’t really in the cards for communication pros.

With that in mind, this week’s Spin Sucks Question asks:

Whether personal or professional, what are you changing in 2019?

Setting Yourself Up for Success: Read More!

I love resolutions and goals that focus on reading more. But when you consume and create content for a living, “more” isn’t always the problem.

David Alexander feels that he needs to double down on long(er) form content. “Real” reading, per se, rather than “social media” reading…

In 2019, I plan to make a few changes both personally and professionally.

Firstly in 2018, I consumed more online content than ever before and while there is a lot of value in doing this I have also come to the conclusion that all of this digital consumption has taken away from my ability to consume long-form content like actual printed books.

So in 2019, I plan to read 52 books, that’s one a week to see if by the end of the year I have gained more value. This means cutting back on the number of web pages I bookmark to read later.

As a digital marketer and WordPress developer, I am also going to be trying to improve my javascript skills.

The newly-launched Gutenberg editor for WordPress reflects a massive change in the way WP works.

Since developing for Gutenberg relies on Javascript rather than PHP, this switch in development is essential for anyone working with WordPress development.

Setting Yourself Up for Success: KW Cleanup

Setting ourselves up for success can start with whatever will make the most impact. It doesn’t have to be big or groundbreaking.

From David Reischer:

I plan to review our Google Adwords campaigns and clean up our old Adgroups for 2019.

Our PPC strategies became a bit unwieldy in 2018 and I need to review those keywords that performed and discontinue those keyword strategies that did not convert.

Setting Yourself Up for Success: Focus on You

What’s the point of wild success if you burn out in the process?

How are you going to enjoy, or, perhaps more importantly, sustain that success if you don’t check in on your own health and wellness now and than?

From Andrea-Rachel Power:

In 2019, I am going to ease up off the business goals and really hone in on self-care.

Eventually, I want to expand, but right now there are signs that I just need to take things easy a bit so I will try to find balance and keep the inner peace continuous.

I fell off from my morning meditations and yoga and really want to get that started again. I also want to do more of my free improv classes with the youth in my town.

The happier and more balanced I am, the easier it has been for me to stay energized focused and clear-headed to conquer other things.

Sometimes the wrong things consume us and we lose ourselves in it.

I don’t want to burn out before I even really get started.

So, implementing these practices should help me sustain myself for the long haul.

Setting Yourself Up for Success: Purge the Toxicity

When we speak to what’s not working, or what’s wrong… when we understand things need to change, sometimes that can be about perspective. How we frame things. What we focus on. What we don’t.

From Hope Alcocer:

I won’t allow my planner to be marked up with indicators of toxicity: I have kept a planner since I was 9, and I am now 30.

I’m not sure what I needed a planner at 9 years old for, but… My planners in 2016, 2017, and 2018 have been marked up with notations of therapy appointments, doctors appointments, and markers of certain indicators of stress.

Don’t get me wrong, therapy is a life saver, doctors are incredible, and documenting your health is recommended—but the reasons for why I need therapy, why I need doctors appointments for stress-induced health issues, need to go.

I will not mark up another calendar year with these issues. They’re all in my control, and three datebooks indicate nearly three years of which I have allowed certain things to continue.

No more.

I love this one. The things we are doing to be better can often blur/blend with the things they are positioned to fix.

Therapy is helpful, but I can see how it can become associated with the “negative” brought into your life to make “positive.” As we said, it’s all about perspective.

Setting Yourself Up for Success: Be Happy

When it comes to success, it’s often more about happiness than dollars and cents. Although, that helps too.

From Keri Jaehnig:

2019 is more about competing with myself, not others. Doing work that makes me happy and can offer more passive income opportunities. We’re shifting website styles, which should lead to a podcast in the latter part of 2019.

Setting Yourself Up for Success: Opportunity and Process

Jessica Malnik is on a like-minded path:

I just started thinking about my theme for 2019. I think it will be Opportunity. I’m transitioning from solopreneur/freelancer to agency owner.

For additional context, my theme this year has been Process.

Good luck, Jessica!

Setting Yourself Up for Success: Enhance!

Chris Williams shares his secret to success in the coming year:

My 2019 theme will be “Enhance!”

Sharpen the skill set with some courses and certifications.

Squeeze more productivity out of my days.

Maybe experiment with a podcast.

Finally, publish more books! (I have two in the works, both fiction.)

That’s a lot of enhancement! Congrats, Chris. Looking forward to seeing how it all pans out.

Setting Yourself Up for Success: Just… More!

Katie Robbert gets the last word(s) today:

More automation, more passive income offerings, more revenue.

We’re also hoping to tweak our messaging a bit to focus more on communicating and storytelling with data.

Up Next: What to Watch For in 2019

Earlier this week—in our annual “12 Days of Christmas” series—Gini Dietrich wrote about the top two trends to watch for in 2019.

If you haven’t read it yet, I don’t want to spoil the surprise, but they might have something to do with the rise of virtual assistants and Larry Kim‘s new project…

And while those two trends are pretty compelling, there are likely many more innovations on the horizon for marketers and humans alike!

Maybe there’s something that’s been gaining ground over the past year that will really make an impact in 2019, or perhaps there’s something new and unexpected we can look forward to.

What are you most excited about for 2019?

What are the top trends, innovations, technologies, or opportunities that you’re looking forward to in the new year?

You can answer here, in the free Spin Sucks community, or on the socials (use #SpinSucksQuestion so we can find you).

Mike Connell

Mike Connell is the director of client services at Arment Dietrich, an integrated marketing communications firm. He is also a contributor to the award-winning PR blog, Spin Sucks, the leading source for modern PR training, trends, and insights. Find more of Mike's musings on his blog, Communative. Join the Spin Sucks   community!

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