The Lingering Backward Glance

I like this time of year for the lists. The 2013 Best Ofs: films, books, TV. It may be small of me, but I look forward to late December so that I can see what the smart people have to say about what the culture put out. It’s part self-satisfaction–“Ha! I was right about that being a good book!” But also a need for direction–“what are the hip kids listening to?”

So my discipline for late December is to make a year-end list for myself. Because here’s how it usually is for me: I’m climbing, I’m looking ahead at the path. I’m feeling how steep and rutted a go it is, but not how amazing it is to have climbed to this place. Translate to real life: I’m fussing with all these day-to-day struggles, thinking about all the things I wish were true, questing toward those next things. I have a surprisingly myopic relationship to the recent past. Except for brief flashes, I’m unable to look at where I was six months ago, a year ago, and appreciate the things the ground I covered, what worked and what I could happily discard if it didn’t. And especially to recognize that I am now doing things (sometimes effortlessly) that I was questing for back then.

When I turned around on the path of 2013, these were some of the sights:

  • I finished a nutrition coaching certification and, more importantly, started immediately to work with clients on improving nutrition.
  • I developed a series of workshops on health and fitness topics, began presenting them and built partnerships for presenting more of them. I even gave a workshop to which no one came. And I have to rack that up as some kind of achievement, right? I took a frigging f l y i  n  g L E A P annnnd…. <spoink!> ….well, it wasn’t the end of the dang world.
  • I taught a cooking class (something I fantasized about doing for years) and had at least as much fun as I always thought I would.
  • I got myself working on a regular schedule with designated days off, and specific hours dedicated to client sessions, business planning, writing, marketing and administration.
  • I got to know you–the person that I intend to serve with coaching, training, classes and workshops–a lot, lot better, and that has helped me design and communicate with so much more clarity.

Those are some 2013 highlights–it feels good to mark them here. Try it! Here’s a suggestion: if you keep a weekly to-do list or notes from meetings with a coach, mentor, teacher or counselor, look back at those as a way to trigger what you were working on months ago, and which now may be de rigueur.

Salutes to all our challenges and achievements. Thanks for being a part of this, for reading and sharing your thoughts. Happy year-end to all.