5 New Years Resolutions for an Eco-Influencer

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5 New Years Resolutions for an Eco-Influencer

I have been a sustainability professional for 3 and a half years.  After founding a local non-profit, I worked on dozens of local teams launching new initiatives in Des Moines, Iowa.  2013 was the best year yet.  Here is my super short New Years resolution list for 2014.  If it works for you, steal it.

1. Become More Self-Aware

The best way to be effective, is to understand why I do what I do.  Uncover my own hidden agendas, patterns, and automatic reactions to situations.  Gain freedom in choice and ways of being in various situations.

  • Understand my past, deal with my own stuff
  • Embrace my strengths, accept my weaknesses
  • Read at least one new book on “shadow” work

2. Harness Emotions

Positive and negative, I want to be in touch with how I’m feeling.  Create space and time to notice my emotions before making important decisions.  My #1 goal is to make a difference… not be right.

  • Start meditating regularly again
  • Give people in my life permission to ask, “How are you feeling?” and answer with an emotion (happy, sad, angry, afraid)
  • Read at least one new book on “emotional intelligence”

3. Get Super Curious About Others

The key to making a difference is understanding what motivates people – their values.  Talk less.  Listen more.  Ask questions, so I can get to what is really important.

  • Give short answers about me, and ask more questions than others
  • Read at least one new book on “influence”

4. Expand Vocabulary

I’m interested in results, not descriptions.  It’s less important how I want to say it, and more important how others need to hear it to make a change.  Speak their language.

  • Respect others enough to use language they use and understand
  • Every time I disagree on a  major project, read a book from the opposition’s viewpoint

5. Invest in Self-Education

My most important asset is my mind, and it will determine my potential.  Personal and professional development is priceless.  My willingness to pay is one measure of my commitment to make a difference.

  • Take more workshops, books are easy to read and forget
  • Connect directly with mentors I respect, ask for coaching


What does your list look like?



Adam Hammes is the executive director of the Iowa Sustainable Business Forum, a consultant, author, and motivational speaker. He specializes in helping businesses and sustainability professionals with environmental and social performance.

Check out Adam's new book on Amazon, Audible and Kindle: Sustainable Business in Iowa.

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