Turning the Calendar

Dec 21, 2021

So here we are: The calendar is telling us that it needs to be replaced with a new version that will have dates ending in 2022.

For some, the new year in itself indicates a new chapter. This seems a bit contrived, as there are more significant transitions—a new job, a new city or town to live in, adapting to the death of a loved one, or the transition I work with, involving divorcing clients.

Regardless of the view one takes, preparing for a new chapter (or new year) can be seen as an opportunity to envision goals and create a plan to achieve them.

One starting point in this process can be to take a hard and honest look at the chapter (or year) that is ending.

Many organizations prepare what is known as an End of Year Report. These reports are usually filled with nice charts that document results, along with a narrative that explains what has been accomplished. Interestingly enough, many of these reports aren’t published until well after the end of the year. Such reports may be useful for organizations, but evaluating our lives in charts seems cold and impersonal.

I think it makes total sense to look at what you have been able to accomplish as you make significant transitions, whether it be the job you are leaving, the place you’re moving from, the year that is closing, or the marriage that is ending.

Nonetheless, I think it makes total sense to look at what you have been able to accomplish as you make significant transitions, whether it be the job you are leaving, the place you’re moving from, the year that is closing, or the marriage that is ending.

Some simple questions to consider:
1. What are the good things that have happened in my life over the course of the past year related to my job? the place I’ve lived? my marriage? my children?
2. What did I do that made these good things happen?
3. What have I learned about myself?
4. In considering the challenges that I faced this year, what was my contribution to any negative experience?
5. Based on what has happened, what would I do differently and why?

This process of self-reflection can be the foundation for a productive new path forward.