Reset and Reboot

So this morning is the day after Christmas of 2018 and the house is quiet. Even the new puppies are all snuggled down back to their napping after their early morning of chaos and frenzy that was sure to keep me from my coffee routine far too long for my nerves to handle very well at all. This week between Christmas and New Years is always an awkward one, isn’t it?

Many are on vacation and those who aren’t seem to find frustration at every corner because everyone else is on vacation. Work slows to a crawl – no big financial decisions are made during the last week of the year, ever. Most offices go into a sort of “minimal maintenance only” routine while everyone else just seems to huddle around. “The holidays” are truly plural, not only in the variety of religious and cultural celebrations this time of year observes but also in the multitude of days covered by this otherwise ubiquitous vacation.

One thing I love to do during this week is to take the time to think through the next year. I consider dreams and goals and take the week to create realistic timelines and strategies for making those ideas into reality over the next 12 months.

I start with the big picture. By the end of 2019, where do I want my life to be? I think through that question with regard to my work, my finances, my personal life, my family life, my health and even hobbies. Once I begin to have a firm idea on what I want out of 2019, it’s time to chart the course to get there. What steps do I need to take to fulfill each of those goals? What kind of timeline is realistic for those steps? Are there any resources I need to make those steps happen? Then, the final action for me in my planning – creating a timeline and calendar items attached to those steps, which are ultimately attached to those goals.

This is why it takes me an entire week to go through this exercise. It’s not something I can just slap together and make happen. Maybe some can…but mine has to be thought out, mulled over, and redone over and over. I typically spend an hour or two a day on this but I do spend that time every day over the course of about a week or so. I work on it. Leave it alone. Think about it. Come back to it. Over and over. However, this time is so well spent that it takes my year from being something I float through to being something I navigate with direction and purpose.

I spent far too much time in my adult life wandering without direction and simply living a life of reaction. Do you know that life? The kind where things happen every day and all our time is spent reacting to those outside influence? Sure, we may save money for a vacation. We may find time in the morning to center ourselves. We might even improve our relationships or our career. But for me at least, very little of it was done because, at the beginning of it all, I decided from the outset “This is where I want to go and how I plan to get there.”

Life can either be reaction or it can be decision.

Of course, we will always have to react to unexpected turns and events – but even those reactions should be informed and carried out according to our already predetermined decisions. Right?

So. Here I am. The morning after Christmas and thinking through 2019. I’m in the early stages so it’s still just a bunch of vague ideas, dreams, and a few legitimate goals, but it’s a start. Over the next several days those goals and dreams will start to become action items and timelines.

What do you want to achieve this coming year? What are your goals and dreams? If you need help with yours, let me know. I’m always here and I’m always excited to help people think through their goals and their dreams. In the mean time, I’ll be here working away and keeping my coffee close by.

2 Replies to “Reset and Reboot”

  1. Hey Shae! This is a great article. I am in the middle of that same process personally and professionally. In fact, I just wrote a similarly themed one on the importance of a time of annual reflection before we do our annual planning. I would love to connect with you in the coming days to talk about old times, current times, and what may be out there in the future as we blaze trails.

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