Nice to see you again.
Well, folks, it’s that time: time to think back on the year.
I was talking to my therapist the other day (*always the beginning of an exhilarating sentence), and I told her that – shocking, I know – as the year draws to a close, I’ve been doing a little Year in Review. My review isn't quite as enthralling as the New York Times version, but it's poignant in its own ways.
She said, as I knew she would, “And how was the year?”
All in all, it was a good year. I made progress and experienced “wins” in my three areas of particular interest. I wish I had more tangible things to cheers as 2019 draws to a close, but I had a lot of positive shifts, and I learned a lot about myself. Yes, all in all, it was a good year.
And I can’t WAIT for 2020. I. Am. PUMPED. I see it. I feel it. Big stuff is coming from multiple directions. 2020 is a good omen, right? As someone very wise just said, "20/20 vision!"
I just looked up the Chinese zodiac to see if 2020 is a Pig year (my sign). It's not, but it reminded me that: "the Pig is a symbol of good luck, happiness, and abundance – including fertility." Well, we do have 21 frozen embryos ready to go, so that's pretty abundant. Kicking off the new year in a hopeful place!
But enough about me. I write about ME ME ME all the time, and it probably gets exhausting to read. So, in the spirit of new beginnings, I want to turn the tables.
Think about your year. How was it?
What didn’t happen?
What did you lose?
What did you gain?
What obstacles did you overcome?
What obstacles are you still trying to figure out?
Did you hit any targets you wanted to hit?
How have you made progress?
How did you grow?
What are you leaving behind?
What are you carrying forward?
As part of a new course brainstorm at IIN, my manager recently asked me to think about things that have changed my life. In typical fashion, I scoured years of collected notes from books and podcasts and people in my life and emailed back a list of 30 things.
“Wow….” she said. “This is a lot!”
Don’t worry: I won’t list them all here. But here are a few nuggets that have been helpful during my Year in Review and that might be helpful as you do your own:
“We only regret the risks we didn’t take.”
You always lose something. What aren’t you willing to lose right now? Or, another version: “We all must give a fuck about something, in order to value something. And to value something, we must reject what is not that something.”
Acceptance isn’t the same as settling. Settling means, “I’ve made my bed, and now I’m stuck lying in it.” Acceptance means, “Yes” and “Now, what am I going to do?” Acceptance gives you room to grow.
“We’re all rough drafts...Real success is rooted in learning how to turn mistakes into successes, losses into gains, failure into things of value that propel you forward rather than hold you back.”
“Getting found almost always means being lost for awhile.”
“Every year you close a new chapter in your story. Please, please, please don’t write the same one seventy-five times and call it a life.”
If THAT’S not a great kick in the pants, then I don’t know what is.
In closing, please know that wherever you are is a great place to be and wherever you're going is probably going to be a turbulent ride at times, but you're always the one behind the wheel. So drive like you mean it.
Thank you for riding along with me in 2019, and cheers to a bright and beautiful year ahead as we keep sharing stories that at least someone wants to hear.