Setting Successful New Year’s Resolutions

Happy New Year! Time to work on your New Years Resolutions

It’s almost that time of year again – New Year Resolutions! Millions of people around the world are vowing to lose weight, quit smoking, stick to a budget, further their professional development, and more. How many will actually follow through with these changes and resolutions? Probably not many. Have you done this before? Have you made promises to yourself and not kept them? You are not alone. Why does it seem so easy to make changes in our lives, until we actually begin to do the work?

Change is hard. Most of us don’t stop to think about that when we set goals. We start out filled with passion, fire and excitement. We feel invincible and know we can accomplish whatever we desire. We see the glorious outcome of our desires shining before us, and we are determined to make it happen. Then we begin to encounter obstacles along the way. We may struggle halfheartedly through a few of them, but eventually we find ourselves making excuses, procrastinating and losing interest in those same goals we were so excited about before. What happened?

Goal setting involves much more than making a promise to do something. We need to equip ourselves with the right tools and mindset to ensure our success. There are several things we need to think about before we set goals:

Why? – What is your reason for wanting this particular outcome? It’s lofty to want to lose weight or quit smoking, but if you don’t have a clear, strong reason for wanting to do so, you will have no passion to fuel your efforts. What will you gain by making these changes in your life? What will you gain by not making changes? Oh yes, you are gaining something by keeping your bad habits around, or else you would have gotten rid of them long before now. Understand that, and acknowledge it. Be honest with yourself. Be clear about what you really want. Let’s say you want to quit smoking because you want to live a healthier life. Why? What will that do for you? It will improve your quality of life. Okay, why is that important to you? Keep asking yourself “why”, until you get to the “meat” of your desire. Be sure you understand exactly why these goals are important to you, and write it down. You will want to read it over and over again, especially when you feel your resolve crumbling.

Action Goals vs. Results Goals – Most of us make the mistake of setting results-oriented goals, rather than action goals. This is an important distinction. Setting a goal to lose thirty pounds is not a goal at all. It is an outcome. The goal should be to exercise and eat right – which will result in the loss of weight. We need to treat the problem, not the symptom. Make a note of the outcome you want, and then make a list of the actions that will get you there. Then make the actions your goal. Be specific. Rather than setting a goal to “lose weight”, decide how, when, how often, and for how long you will exercise each day. Decide what foods you will eat (or not eat), and how much of them. Set realistic and specific daily goals, and reward yourself when you accomplish them. Each day is an opportunity for victory.

Believe You Deserve It – Many of us struggle with low self-esteem, and feel we don’t really deserve success. Unfortunately, if we don’t believe we deserve it, we will resist it when it arrives. We may do this unconsciously by sabotaging our own efforts, or we may outright refuse to even try. We must first understand and then truly believe that we do deserve success and happiness. In addition, we must be consciously open to receiving it. We’re so good at giving to others, but many of us won’t accept help or blessings for ourselves. Be willing to believe that you deserve to be successful and happy. Then be willing to accept that success when it arrives. Give yourself the gift of better health, inner peace, more organization, a better job – whatever you are striving for in setting your goals. Affirm aloud to the universe each day, “I joyfully accept all of the abundance and success the universe has for me, NOW.” Remember that the more abundance you have, the more you will be able to help others also.

Commitment – One of the greatest secrets of success is simply not giving up. When we look at successful people, they seem to have it so easy. What we usually don’t see are the years of hard work, dedication and commitment that got them to where they are today. Many of them struggled through massive obstacles and setbacks, sometimes having to start all over again repeatedly. Are you that committed to your goals? Will you persevere no matter what? Make a promise to yourself that you will continue working toward your goals, even if you aren’t seeing the progress you hoped for. Be willing to work hard and continue working hard, even when – especially when – the going gets rough. When obstacles arise, fuel your persistence with positive thoughts and keep moving forward. Let your determination glow hot and bright, and burn away all doubts and fears. Don’t beat yourself up if you make mistakes, simply get up and begin moving forward again.

Patience – Forming new habits takes time and practice. The good news is that countless people have proven it can be done. If they can do it, you can do it too. Give it your best effort, but don’t expect perfection from yourself. You may stumble and fall; you may grow weary of the battle. However, remember that anything worthwhile takes effort. Your goals and dreams are worth fighting for, no matter how fierce the battle, no matter how long it takes.

Most importantly, believe in yourself. Believe that you have the skills, ability and determination to make your dreams (and your resolutions) come true. That, above all else, will guarantee your success.

Wendy Betterini is a freelance writer specializing in self-improvement and personal development concepts. Visit her website, http://www.WingsForTheHeart.com for articles on positive thinking, goal-setting, self-esteem, personal growth, and more.

How CreditScape Can Help You Achieve Your New Year’s Resolutions, by Gent Culver, ICCE

As a seasoned credit professional of more than 30 years, I have never seen so many changes in my career as I have in the past few years. From electronic payments and credit cards, to fairly consistent paying customers changing their own terms, to expanding markets and doing more with less, change is something that’s been happening at a much more frequent rate. How you deal with these changes can really make or break your company’s credit department, its cash flow, and ultimately your career.

Now that we have all made our “New Year’s resolutions,” and a month has come and gone since we made them, I urge you to make sure you don’t drop the ball on your personal and professional goals.

Maybe you would like to improve your own personal skill set and the overall skillsets within your organization. Or perhaps you want your team to get up-to-date with the latest credit training / information in the marketplace. For me, as I plan for 2018, I look at ways to improve our credit department and include them in my budgeting process. I urge you to please take some time to review the latest CMA CreditScape Spring Summit information. By attending the two days of workshop training, I believe that it will propel you and your department to the next level.

What will be covered this spring…“Dealing with Change Management.”

Here are a few of the items that stood out to me:

  • All Levels of Expertise Welcome – Good for beginners to experts in your departments. With 14 sessions, there is something in there for everyone, including customer service skills, stress management, and financial statement analysis.
  • Skills for the credit manager of 2022 – What should credit professionals be doing now to make sure they’re ahead of the curve in 5 years, and what skills should they already have.
  • Customers who change their own terms – With an increasing number of companies trying to dictate their own terms, what can, and should, credit professionals do?
  • Changing existing processes through automation.
  • Managing change within and outside of your company.
  • Getting a “seat at the table” with upper management.
  • …and a lot more.

Plus, the discussions are led by practitioners, not marketing people, to provide you with tangible results to bring back to the office.

In an environment where a credit professional’s time is at a premium, we hope to have your support and attendance to help “prove” that CMA is doing what’s best to help your company’s credit department.

I hope you have a great year and are able to reach your personal and professional credit goals. Please remember that CMA is here to help.

Thanks for reading!

Why CMA Still and Always Will Matter to My Company and Me!  by Gent Culver, ICCE

With the turning of the calendar to the New Year, I always like to evaluate my relationships and reflect on the year that has just past. In doing that in 2018, I can’t help but think about the many ways that Credit Management Association (CMA) makes my job as a credit manager easier.

Here are some reasons that are important to me as a CMA member:

 

  • CMA continues to bring the credit community together via networking at Industry Credit Group meetings (my company and I are regular participants) and at educational events such as CreditScape and other webinars and programs.
  • CMA’s anscers.com website platform is unique in that it allows me to obtain past payment history of customers that also do business with other CMA member companies.
  • CMA also offers extremely competitive pricing on credit reporting contracts with the major credit bureaus. They also have a professional staff that can walk you through the best features of each report, enabling you to compare similar products so that you can choose the best ones for your company’s needs.
  • If your company supplies materials or labor for construction projects, CMA can make sure that your company’s lien rights are protected under the law through its construction lien filing department.

CMA is here to stay.  It has been providing high-end credit services and education to companies like yours throughout California and Nevada for over a century and it plans on continuing this service for years to come.   As CMA Chairman of the Board, I thank you for your continued support of CMA and its vision of a united credit community  and I would also like to thank the staff of CMA for their dedication to the members of CMA.

Thanks for reading!

 

Gent Culver

Chairman’s Blog: Credit New Year’s Resolutions, by Michael W. Fenner, CBA

Yes, it’s that time of year again and it’s hard to believe another year has passed us by. I hope everyone enjoyed spending time with their families and relatives over the holiday season. As we start 2016, everyone always asks “Have you made your New Year’s resolutions yet?” Or “What are your New Year’s resolutions this year?” As I write this blog, I am thinking about what my personal and professional resolutions will be this year. Let me take a minute or two and suggest a few resolutions you could include with yours.

If each one of us could include a resolution or two about CMA we could make this association stronger for all of us. As you read through the suggestions, hopefully you will find some to help you get started. It’s important to have the backing and support of Credit Management Association for your credit department as well as your company and I appreciate you taking the time to read though the following. Enjoy and “Happy New Year!”

  • CMA / AGA Collections – Maybe your current collection agency isn’t producing the results you are expecting…give CMA / AGA an opportunity they offer nationwide service, reasonable rates, excellent communication and they collect the money too.
  • Construction Forms Filing Services (CFFS) – Have you outgrown your current provider and need to try something new? You can always try CFFS…CMA has accurate, personal, and cost-effective construction forms filing in all 50 states, and has access to a network of attorneys and resources to help fulfill all of your construction needs.
  • Professional Development – Are you looking to update your skills? CMA has quite a few options from the CreditScape Spring and Fall Summits, to online courses, live and recorded webinars, and the courses available to get your Professional Credit Certification all in one place.
  • Industry Credit Groups (ICG) – Please take some time and experience the ICG’s CMA has to offer. We participate and always come away with some useful information. CMA’s 60 current groups network and share factual information, and provide you with responses promptly from other group members so you can then make more educated decisions with your new accounts and or your current A/R for companies within your own vertical industry who share the same customers as your company does.
  • Business Credit Reports – Maybe you already have contracts with a provider or two…sometimes you are looking for supplementary information to help you with your business decisions. Or maybe you are unsure if your current data provider is giving you as much information as there is available. CMA offers the anscersX multi-bureau commercial credit report, NACM National Trade Credit Report, as well as DNBi, Equifax and Experian. Additionally, they offer consumer reports and international reports as well. It gives you the opportunity to purchase on a report by report basis.

Maybe it’s as simple as just wanting to learn more about what CMA has to offer. If you go to www.anscers.com click on the education tab and you can join a “free” webinar called “Maximize your Membership” scheduled on February 17th from 9:00 am to 10:00 am hosted by Michael Mitchell, President and CEO of Credit Management Association. Check it out!

Please remember we need you to support “your” credit association when you can and as always “thank you” for your support. I encourage you to send in any ideas to improve your credit association. Let me know your thoughts. I’d love to hear your feedback.

Michael W. Fenner, CBA, is the Credit Management Association Chairman and Regional Credit Manager for Beacon Roofing Supply. He can be reached at 714-321-8187, or mfenner@becn.com.