two ways sign

Look Both Ways

Before Moving Into The New Year

2021 is over and we’re welcoming 2022! During the first week of any new year, I like to look back and take stock of what I’ve learned and accomplished as well as how I’ve grown.

For me, 2021 was an incredible year of learning and trying new things.

What type of year was it for you? Take some time to reflect and share with me how it was for you, your creativity, or your career.

I don’t know about you, but my inbox and social media feed are being inundated with sites selling calendars, planners, and goal setting tools. Yes, it’s that time of year, so grab the one you like. Then take a look back at what you’ve accomplished and do an evaluation of what worked and what didn’t.

We’ve all heard some form of this Henry Ford quote:

“If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.”

Very True! And I’m all in for changing what needs to be changed!

After completing my assessment, I determine what changes I need to make to improve my life and grow my business in the coming year. Only then do I start with the goal setting.

Some of the tools I use in my business are a big yearly dry erase calendar, and the Full Focus Planner. I like the dry erase yearly calendars because I can see my long-range plans at-a-glance. And I can easily change things as needed. The Full Focus planner allows me to capture 3 key “to do” items for each day based on my BIG goals with lots of room for notes. It also allows me to keep my long-term goals in sight!

When I begin my review process, I can quickly review each month of the past year and determine:

  1. What were my goals for the last year and what did I accomplish? What were my wins?
  2. What worked and what didn’t? And more specifically, WHY?
  3. What needs to come forward into the new year? (And possibly, what needs to drop out of the race altogether? LOL)

Let me tell you a quick story. I’m going to take you back in time 18+ months… In the middle of 2020, when EVERYTHING was going online, I was terrified but also intrigued. Could it work for me? I decided to learn how to build an online career and creative business. I had become “COVID jobless” and was exploring other options.

I am a creative and had already been working to reinvent myself for a couple years, I had already done a ton of learning and self-discovery! Now, I’d been thrown into the deep end! I had no choice, it was sink or swim!

My original goals for 2020 did not include teaching! However, I took so many courses and was having so much fun in my “new” self, that I thought others just might need this too! So, I headed online to do some research. And sure enough, I found all kinds of women who were thinking the same thing ~

How can I rediscover who I am, what I love, and what I want to DO with it?

Sound familiar?

Now, I am delighted to get out of bed in the morning, and I love what I do and where/how I get to do it! I connected with others in the online realm and worked with mentors to discover the secret sauce! After much learning myself, I’m finally ready to share what I did and how I did it with the world!

Over the last 18 months, I’ve accomplished a ton:

  • Created several collage/mixed media collections and sold much of them on my website.
  • Mastered Adobe Illustrator and have become a surface pattern designer.
  • Learned marketing tips and tricks I didn’t know existed.
  • Built an online course and membership that teaches midlife women how to reignite that spark within and keep it lit so that they can find direction, regain a sense of self, and increase their life satisfaction in the second half.

I share this story because accomplishing all this was a major HIGH-FIVE for me in 2021. And it set me up for some pretty big things in 2022! I learned so much that it’s hard to even put into words. As I think back, I realize that I made a ton of mistakes too. I never knew just how much I would need to learn to do all of this. Every step I took required a new set of skills that I didn’t yet have. It made for very slow-going, but I confess – it has ALL been worth it! (PS, it’s probably a good thing I didn’t know what it would take ahead of time!)

However, one of my greatest strengths is having the courage to jump into new things before I have everything figured out. I know that I’ll learn more by DOING than by over-thinking or over-analyzing and trying to get everything perfect before I begin. I KNOW I’ll figure it out.

I’ll be completing my review of 2021 in the next few days and hope you take advantage of this time of year to do the same. It’s a rich and rewarding process and sets you up well to embrace the creative goal setting phase. More about that next week!

Be-U, on purpose, 4-Life!

Leave a comment below and tell me what you’ve accomplished in the last year. What is your “review” showing you and what might need to change? And, if you want to reignite your spark and discover how to come alive in the second half, follow this link to a survey https://bit.ly/3FQ1y8D. No sales page, I promise! Let me know your biggest struggles and how I can help.

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2 thoughts on “Look Both Ways”

  1. Jennifer Wygal Millett

    Well, the first part of 2021 I don’t really remember. The second half it got juicy. A new grandbaby was born. I learned to tat and love it. I got back into drawing and love it. I’m spinning more, knitting more, scrapbooking old, old photos. Cleaning my crap room, uh, not yet. Now grant it, there are steps backwards here and there but that’s bound to happen but everything is still here when I get up and going again. The energy and motivation are still a problem. Got a whole blanket of Grade 1 rose/gray alpaca coming this spring. Got to get it processed but oh well. Saving pesos for that. Recently acquired tatting books to tat things. Oooooooooooooo! Already knitting on a throw blanket, but had to get more yarn dyed to match. That should be done. Got my “How to Draw” DVDs and have started watching them. Among all of this, I do have to have time to rest because my body can’t go, go, go like yours. But like I said before, motivation and energy are my key problems.

    1. Sounds like you are really finding some things that light you up. Motivation and energy will always ebb and flow. The important thing is to always get back up and keep going from where you left off. That old saying-falling down isn’t failing. You only fail if you stay down! LOL! So – CONGRATS on a great year of discovery, and here’s to another year of developing those skills and possibly–learning more!

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