By: Angie Ballman Punton
“Like sand through an hourglass…so are the days of our lives.”
Wait, did I just quote a soap opera? Yes. Yes, I did. Because here we are on the eve of another new year asking ourselves, “Where did the time go?” and nothing personifies the passing of time more vividly than crystals screeching through that seemingly small opening…
In fact, where does the time go? Not only is this blog about to turn four (Happy Birthday, Paradigm Court Reporting Blog!), on a personal note, I’m approaching my seventh year with the firm, my first-born is a couple months away from turning one, and I am 371 days from turning the big 3-0! It absolutely boggles my mind.
With years passing by in a blur, let alone months, weeks and days, I see the increasing value of setting goals at the beginning of a new year to ensure we purposefully and positively impact our future.
To determine whether you would benefit from setting New Year’s Resolutions, simply reflect back on the year that just passed and ask yourself questions like, “What were my pain points?” “If I could make one change to my life, what would it be?” “What did I hope to achieve but did not achieve last year?” If, in fact, we’ve now established that there are things we could do differently/better to make 2016 fabulous and that now would be a great time to set those goals, what next?
Back in May, I attended my fourth TeamWomenMN Leadership Conference, and “The Happy Hour Effect” author Kristen Brown was one of the featured speakers. She presented what I felt was a thought-provoking exercise that could be instrumental in formulating one’s 2016 New Year’s Resolutions. Make a list based on the following:
- What do you do every day (or almost every day)? For example: Wake up at 6:00, buy coffee at Starbucks, commute to work, exercise, make dinner, do the dishes, pay bills, pack lunches for the kids, read a chapter of a book, watch the news, etc.
- What makes you happy/brings you joy?
- What things in your life stress you out?
- What are your dreams and ambitions?
Now circle the three things that make you the most happy on the list, then cross out the three things that make you the most unhappy. From there, write out a few ideas on how you can do more of what you love doing… and less of what you don’t. What things do you do every day that you shouldn’t or wouldn’t have to? That someone else could do for you? That you could eliminate? It’s a fascinating exercise, and one which can help bring out where changes could easily be made to make the coming year your best year yet!
At 12:00 AM on Friday morning, we all get a fresh start, a clean slate, a blank canvas. Let’s be ready to write “The Story of 2016”!
Happy New Year!