Hump Day: September is the perfect month for renewal and reflection

Hump DayHump Day
By Brian Cormier
Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2012
Moncton Times & Transcript
Editorial section

The National Pork Board in the United States used to use ‘Pork. The other white meat!’ to market its wares, namely pork chops, ham, etc. Pork, of course, is technically not white meat; however it certainly hit a chord with the public because the National Pork Board used the slogan or variations of it for 21 years from 1987 until 2008.] I think September should have its own slogan, too. ‘September. The other January.’ Whereas most of us see January as a time for renewal, resolutions and new beginnings, September also plays a major role in that renewal.

The kids (big and small) are starting school again. New teachers. New grades. New schools. New challenges. The bigger kids have started college or university, with many of them really getting that new beginning by moving away from home for the first time. Things will never be the same. Family dynamics have been shaken – not necessarily in a bad way, just in a different way.

Like January, September is all about embracing change and making new commitments. Almost overnight, it seems the weather begins to cool down and the days are definitely shorter. I know when I take the dog out to do her business in the evenings these days, it’s that time of the year when a flashlight is necessary, especially if the aforementioned ‘business’ involves the need of a little plastic bag.

It’s not easy to find the ‘business’ in the dark in brown grass, let’s just say that, so a flashlight is necessary. I’ll be glad when the snow falls. Easier to find then – and the steam acts like a smelly little billboard that announces, ‘Here I am!’ Well, now, this just turned gross, didn’t it? What started out as a perfectly nice and inspirational column about September 1st being ‘The Other New Year’ just went downhill quite quickly. Shame on me!

So, as I was saying until I got sidetracked by doggie business, September is here and it’s a perfect time to get to some new goal setting! If you run your own business like I do, this is the perfect time of the year to re-commit to networking, meeting new people, reconnecting with past clients and getting some new business through the door.

This is especially important if you’ve had a slow summer. If you’re a consultant like me, the summer can sometimes be one of the slower periods of the year – right up there with the last two weeks of December, another traditionally slow time of the year when the world shuts down for a couple of weeks to celebrate the holidays.

What to do, though, is to make hay when the sun shines and recharge the batteries during the slow times. Ideally, business is always crazy, but the reality is that we all have slow times. My traditional slower time is the summer just because many clients are away. They can’t send you business if they’re on vacation, right? Right.

But, now that September is here, it’s time to turn the networking into high gear and renew old connections and make new ones. You just never know where the work is.

I’m not sure if you believe in visualization – and by that, I mean visualizing yourself succeeding, but I’m a true believer. Athletes are well known to have great success using visualization. They see themselves in their mind’s eye making that basket, scoring that goal or touchdown, or hitting that home run.

Visualization is an excellent tool in business, too. If you want more contracts, visualize it! Visualize money falling from the sky. Visualize your telephone ringing with people wanting to do business with you. Send out those positive vibes to the universe.

September is a great time to do this sort of positive stuff because everyone seems to be in the ‘new beginnings’ mode. As much as September is all about a return to routine for many, it’s also very strongly about new challenges and putting action plans into place for achieving more and going further.

Whether it’s taking a class on photography (something I need to do – I have a great camera but have zero knowledge on how to use it), how to speak Spanish or even how to paint, crochet, knit, decorate cakes or what have you, this is a great time of year to reinvigorate your brain after the heat and humidity of summer that tends to be an energy-sucking time of the year – at least for me.

It’s September. We can sleep better. The weather is more pleasant. Fall is just around the corner, the most glorious time of year, at least in my books. It’s the time of the harvest, a great bounty from the gardens. There’s an abundance of fresh local food around. It’s a perfect time to head out to the local farmers’ markets. If you’ve never been to one, this is the best time of the year to do so.

I find the fall so invigorating. That cool, crisp air is just ripe with opportunity. People are back from vacation and raring to go. September has been ingrained in us since the age of five or six that it’s time to start learning with the beginning of the school year.

September is a perfect month for renewal. It’s a perfect month for dreaming and for achieving. Take September in your arms, give it a big hug and plant a big wet kiss right on its lips! This is the beginning of something sweet!

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