Sometimes life gets in the way of the “plans” that we make. Obligations, personal goals, careers, family, and even self. When this happens, some people forget a few things along the way. So here are the 6 things that I want you to remember moving forward into 2015.
#1) Develop better work/life balance
When I decided to seriously focus on my writing career over the past eighteen months, I spent months at a time in my writer’s cave. However, I always made time for my family, close friends, and community work. Still, in order to crank out novels that range between 50,000-70,000 words, and then take them through second and third drafts…well, it’s not hard to get “lost” in the process and become a hermit. Writing can be autonomous work because, if you’re not writing, then you’re reading about writing, or keeping up with industry news in publishing, studying the works of other writers, or doing a heck of a lot of research. Still in all your getting, don’t forget about establishing a clean boundary between work and life.
#2) Embrace and/or create fulfilling organic relationships
I know this seems pretty fundamental. But in the world of social media, sometimes, genuine, person-to-person contact is lost between the LMAO, or ROTFLOL and the tweets, pinning, liking, and the “I heart Us” on Instagram. People connect so much online that they “forget” to connect offline. Also, sometimes we’re so busy trying to get where we want to be, we don’t acknowledge the people already in our lives organically.
I’m the type of person who likes face-to-face interaction with loyal, trusted, friendships. I’d rather have 3 close friends, than a 300 acquaintances. Networking acquaintances are great, but when you want to connect, really get on the “personal” level, seek those who love you for who you are, and not merely what based on what they need from you.
I had an associate who knew alot of people. Too many to count really. But when the chips were down, only a handful showed concern about his well-being. It’s important to take stock of the people you allow in your life. Be attentive to the energy, and circumstances they bring in your life. If it’s negative, then it’s time to re-evaluate their role in your life. If you don’t know who in your circle is for your good, or don’t have any. Think about who you are as a person, and what a “definition of a friend” is to you, and seek those like-minded people.
#3) Get your spiritual house in order
The third thing to remember as you go into 2015 is keep God first. Actually this is the FIRST thing you should do, however, I wanted the last part of this message to have a big impact. No matter where you are in your life, no matter the circumstances, no matter the battles you think you’ve lost, or the dreams that you feel aren’t coming to pass. Know that everything has it’s season. Different things are coming together behind the scenes, and I know it’s hard to see it, believe it because it’s taken so long, but if you continue to prepare yourself for that “moment”, write, read, take a course or two, maybe even go back to school, then you’re planting seeds, that will reap a harvest in their season.
#4) Be productive, not busy
There’s a difference between being busy for the sake of being busy, versus being productive. I’m taking business admin courses and one of the classes I enjoyed was Management. Why? Well, it forced me to start thinking about the goals and projects, that consumed too much of my time and weren’t showing fruit. Either I needed to revamp the goal or redefine the project, or…let it go. This brings me to “Strategic Planning”.
Before that class I “planned” things, but they weren’t strategic. Now I map out the steps I need to take differently when it comes to a project and I look not only at it’s initial function but short and long term desires, and how it can integrate into other products and services. Then I prioritize based on time, interests and budget. If it fits, then I pray over and move forward. If it doesn’t. I set it aside, and get back to the MAIN GOAL. Sometimes we can create “things” to do that take us away from the main goal and a year later we’re like. “Dude…I worked my butt off this year, but didn’t accomplish the important steps to the main goal. So be DECISIVE, STRATEGIC and COMMITTED, when planning your goals.
#5) Learn something new
Sometimes we get so caught up in striving for something that we tend to forget to “learn” about self along the way. Sure we learn how to do our jobs better, or a skill or talent better, which ultimately is a reflection of who we are to some degree, but where is the FUN? If what you do for a living is FUN then great. But there are many people who have a job of necessity. And they get so wrapped up in that and other obligations that the forget to have fun and learn something new. So start crossing off things on your bucket list if you haven’t already! And if you don’t have a bucket list. CREATE ONE today.
Part of discovering self, is traveling to new places that pull you out of your comfort zone to stretch you. Learning about new cultures, ancient civilizations, or learning more about your ancestry opens you up to new possibilities. Check out my trips to Vancouver, Canada and Maui, Hawaii