The New Year of 2015 is full of possibilities, opportunities and, most likely, some challenges. Planning for what lies ahead can be purposeful and productive…reading articles by experts about resolutions, reviewing magazines and checking Pinterest posts for “organizing” tips, tidying up home and office (And, for those of you who’ve seen the office stacks, you know that tidying can be a delicate term for bulldozing). That said, one major focus for the New Year is resolving to evolve resolutions into a few that will actually make a positive difference. Here are a few to consider:

Do the most important things first.

This seems so simple, but it’s really a daunting task for some. Men and women alike can appreciate this “Women on Purpose” blog post that really puts this effort into perspective.

Be a better steward.

Taking the time to plan the financial days, months and years ahead is always a good thing. Stone Ward, my employer, offers great opportunity for stewardship through programs that may be afforded by your employer as well. Since the phone calls and emails will take a few days to get back up to speed after the first of the year, it may be a good time to check out how you can participate in your company’s offerings.

It’s also a good time to review programs and apps for personal and professional use that assist in stewardship of time. For PR professionals and others, LinkedIn’s addition of Pulse provides a valuable news source, alongside a resource for trending topics and contacts needed for our media outreach efforts. Google docs aren’t new, but they’re a widely used tool that saves time, allowing multiple users to edit without having to update and send documents via email. For commuters, is a must for real-time traffic updates to get you where you want to go in the least amount of time possible…just beware, you may be taking some by-ways rather than highways, so be watchful in neighborhoods.

Stay focused.

With so many tasks to complete during a day, it’s easy to get distracted. Whether it’s work or home, we often find ourselves in the much maligned position of “multitasking.” Staying focused is a personal aim for the upcoming year, and this article by Jeff Haden may encourage you if you share a similar goal – 9 Essential Habits of Remarkably Effective People.

Of course, planning to eat better, exercise more, stay spiritually in tune and write more “thank you” notes seem to be a constant on the annual resolution list. About four years ago, one resolution was to try to leave personal pronouns out of correspondence and writing if at all possible. So many efforts take a team to complete; even sending an email requires the IT folks to have our company’s email system running smoothly.

It’s been fun to take on this challenge and can be a humbling reminder of how much credit in the day goes to others. If you’ve evolved your resolutions into ones that have really worked, please share them here. Perhaps it will help those of us who’ve resolved to be more focused, effective stewards in 2015!