2016 was the first year I chose My Three Words as a daily guide and decision aid. Thinking of those words every day during my morning routine helped me make choices and plans that helped me achieve some of my 2016 goals.

For 2017, my words are Plan. Crux. Dispatch.


I spent much of 2016 reacting to events and not following my own plan. The word Plan reminds me of several quotes:

  1. “Failing to plan is planning to fail.” – Alan Lakein
  2. “A good plan violently executed now is better than a perfect plan executed next week.” – George S. Patton
  3. ““Plans are worthless, but planning is everything.” – Dwight D. Eisenhower
  4. “To achieve great things, two things are needed; a plan, and not quite enough time.” – Leonard Bernstein

I will actively plan every day, week, and month. I will follow my plan until it is clear that I need a new plan.


In an earlier part of my life, I very enthusiastically climbed rocks. I still consider myself a climber, but haven’t worn the boots in a few years. Most challenging rocking climbing routes have one particular portion that is significantly harder than the rest of the route: the Crux. Life also has a Crux every so often. Just thinking of the crux of my favorite climbs makes my palms sweat a little (and they are now as I type this).

From climbing, I’ve learned that you must act decisively in the crux. If you stop to think or analyze, your muscles will build up lactic acid and you will fall. There are hard parts about life and business that require decisive action to succeed. In the crux, every moment spent analyzing brings you closer to failure. The word Crux means several things to me:

  1. Move through the crux – movement is life.
  2. Some cruxes require risky action.
  3. You must have faith in a bomb-proof anchor in case you fall.
  4. The climb means nothing without the crux.

I will find the crux in each day, set my anchors and move through it.


As an introvert, I have been known to not communicate enough with my colleagues, friends and even my family. Dispatch reminds me to communicate with more frequency with more useful information.

I also seem to have something like adult attention deficit disorder or shiny-object syndrome. I love to start things, but don’t quite get them finished in a timely manner. And I have accumulated many projects and burdens that I should just quit.

The word Dispatch reminds me to:

  1. actively communicate important information daily to those that need it.
  2. kill off my dead-end or not-promising projects.
  3. complete promptly all other projects.

I will decide every day the fate of each project or potential project and aggressively quit anything I don’t want to do and equally aggressively complete all other projects. And I will communicate frequently and regularly with my family, friends, colleagues and customers.


Plan, Crux, and Dispatch cover areas where I failed in 2016. By elevating them to my three words, I will improve these areas in 2017 and succeed in personal and family life and in business.

Happy New Year!

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