We’re about to complete our trip around the sun and start a new year. Which is a great time for reflection about the last year, and planning for what you want 2018 to be.
How has your year been? Did you do what you planned? Did you create opportunities and experiences for yourself? Did you learn something new? Did you master something you’ve learned before? Did you fail, stumble or lose? Did you pick yourself up and keep going?
I hope when you reflect back on 2017 you are proud of your achievements, large and small. I hope that you are kind to yourself when you review your life, the benefit of hindsight can make us judge ourselves harshly. But you also need to be realistic about the things you might need to change or improve.
For me, it’s time to reflect on my three words for 2017 and in a couple of days state my three words for 2018 – maybe.
“Three words” is something I’ve been doing since 2012. As I start this reflection post I feel this was my least successful year of keeping my intentions. You know the saying “Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans”, well this year I slipped back into that. But let’s start at the beginning.
The plan to set more routines and automation, giving me more structure to achieve my goals. Did I succeed? Nope, not even close. I was completely waylaid from my goals this year. While there are many positive outcomes from those diversions, I lost a year in the achievement of my goals.
I wanted to expand my offering in serving you this year – I actually did less serving through my blogs and other resources. I suppose I did serve in other ways. The work I did with Swinburne Professional focused on serving our learners, by giving them greater quality and consistency to their learning. And I’m very proud of how much we achieved to that end, but I stopped serving my people in the process.
Again, I wrote a considerable amount of content this year, but virtually nothing I planned to write. I produced a lot of training courses, instruction manuals and business documents. But the books didn’t progress, and my promising short story stopped in its tracks early on. The simple lack of posts here shows how poorly I did overall.
Part of me feels disappointed that I didn’t create more space for myself this year – that perfectionist I try to keep in check has a LOT to say on the subject! It was another year treading water on some of my loftier goals.
But when I look at the amount of work I produced, and the quality of that work, I’m really proud of 2017. I grew and developed my skills as an instructional designer and facilitator – I even added graphic facilitation skills to that mix. Against all my comfort levels, I’ve included a brief summary of the 2017 achievements.
And I could have chosen to shift my focus back at any time, by not taking extra work from Swinburne. They were my choices: I actively made them, knowing the outcome. So I can’t feel bad about it. And honestly, shifting my brain from audience building for a year was a lovely break.
The shift has allowed me to put some structure in place around the business. It’s consolidated some of the thoughts about how I want to serve, and all while still flexing my writing muscle. It also allowed me to be kind to myself while trying to sort out my health – the pernicious anaemia diagnosis answered a lot of questions but not all. It might sound weird that the insane workload was a kindness, but I did most of that work hidden in my office with Lily. A place where I didn’t feel the need to explain or expose it to others.
But 2018 will be a different ballgame – time to get back on track with the life goals and start pumping out some more content to help others on that journey too.
All I can say for now is – Watch this space.