It is by no means a new thing to consider reflecting as the end of one year approaches and a new one begins, however, we should take some time to think about why this is such a critical activity to engage in.
So the value of reflecting? With the pace and demands of life nowadays, I’m inclined to agree with this quote from Dale Dauten:
“Just because we increase the speed of information doesn’t mean we can increase the speed of decisions. Pondering, reflecting and ruminating are undervalued skills in our culture.” Dale Dauten
Reflection time is not just important – it’s VITAL. It gives us the opportunity to acknowledge our professional and personal successes, challenges and difficulties. It helps us see where we have grown and what directions we would like to take next. It brings learning to life, increases our insights, makes lessons stick more and allows us to grow and change. More and more, in business and life, reflection is being scarified for doing. I see people acting like machines, running from one thing to the next ,whether it is a meeting or an event, with no time to process. We are addicted to do lists and in the habit of doing without adequate reflection: what’s my desired outcome; why is this important to me?; what am I prepared to do to have it and make it happen; what happened; what have I learnt about myself, others from this lesson and how can I apply this learning? The quality of our results will be determined by our action, I agree, but the quality of the action is often determined by the quality of our thinking and reflecting, so I encourage you and teams to do more of this.
And what better time than the end of December – a quieter time for many of us. As 2019 draws to an end, we are at the end of another decade! Where does time go? It seems like only yesterday we were getting all worried about Y2K , that’s now 20 years ago!!! So take this opportunity to think about who you value in your life, where you are on your spiritual or life journey, what you’ve achieved over the past decade and last year, in all areas of importance to you – career, business, health, relationships, growth, contribution etc. I’d also recommend thinking about what you might want to leave behind from last year or this decade – unhelpful patterns, unhealthy choices, old version of yourself or anything toxic from your life. Life will happen, fact, but perhaps with this reflecting, you can decide what you want to have happen. What is important to you in the upcoming year, what do you believe you deserve and what are you willing /want to do to create the year you want? Armed with this information, it is not always about making huge unrealistic promises to ourselves and others and falling at the first hurdle! Sometimes we do want to create change and other times it is simply about preserving the existing. This decade was definitely full of turbulence for me and yet despite a lot of tough times I have so many fun and wonderful memories to cherish. I’m looking forward with gratitude, appreciation for all the love in my life and a determination to make every day count. I wish you a wonderful Christmas and a prosperous and healthy New Year.