Editor’s note: Triangle entrepreneur and thought leader Jes Averhart, CEO of Jes & Co and host of the “Reinvention Road Trip,” joins WRAL TechWire today as a regular contributor. She will be exploring a variety of topics with an emphasis on reinvention in these trying times of COVID. Her columns appear on Thursdays.


RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK – “You’ll never influence the world by being just like it!” — (An Anonymous but Very Wise Person)

 Greetings from Boone, NC! For the last seven years, my family has made an annual pilgrimage over the holidays to Western North Carolina. We stake claim to a cabin, play cards, puzzle, and watch holiday movies in front of a fireplace. As my mom and son get older, it’s a tradition that has become sacred to me. I slow down. I’m present. 

 Inevitably, on the morning of the second day, coffee in hand, phone out of reach, and a cabin still asleep, my mind starts to wander. My wanderlust goes in all sorts of directions and eventually I begin to dream about “what’s next?” When you give your mind space to wander, you can take mental risks, playing them out to see where they might lead. You can imagine a future without limits and some of your best ideas might appear like an apparition. 

  In the next few days, I’ll take the ideas from my ‘wandering session’ and develop them for 2022 using 7 steps that have helped me year after year. They are both practical and dare I say…fun!. If you’re looking for a breakout year, start here. 

  • Step 1: Own it. 

Decide that this is the year your dreams matter and you matter. (Write down why. That’s your North Star.)

  • Step 2: Determine your Gold Rings. 

Choose a specific goal (or three) that move you closer to your dream. I start each year with three “Gold Rings.” These are personal and professional goals that are big, a little scary, but achievable. 

(Tip: Set aside a Saturday morning or a Sunday evening to get detailed and specific. I usually create a mind map on NYE morning and sit with it on New Year’s day while I’m watching football.)
  • Step 3: 30/30/30. 

Level up in pursuit of being a better and healthier version of you. A fun way to gamify this is to create a 30/30/30 Superset. 

For example, go to bed 30 minutes earlier, move your body for 30 minutes a day, set aside 30 minutes to give your mind the space to wander and reset. Write your 30/30/30 Superset and commit to trying it out for one week. Adjust as needed and then rock it for the next 90 days.
  • Step 4: Cut. 
Identify 3 things you can leave on the cutting room floor this year. (Remember, every time you say yes to one thing, you’re saying no to something else! So, let’s say no with intention.) Out with the old, boring and burdensome. In with the new, exciting and promising!
  • Step 5: Invest in yourself. 

You matter. Hire a coach, join an online community or pay for a class. (Often we don’t prioritize things until we invest our hard-earned $$, so invest in yourself.)

  • Step 6: See it, to remember it. 

Set aside an hour and add your new commitments to your calendar. Remove the things that no longer serve you. (Yes, schedule time with yourself. You’re good company!)

  • Step 7: Open up. 
Who’s going to run with you this year? Share your Gold Rings with a friend and let them in on your plan.
Until next week, wander, wonder and see what appears! 
Last week’s column: Time to reignite your fire!