Closing the Loop on the Leap Year

2016 has been an incredible year of change, discovery, focus, creativity, balance, community, family and success. I am so incredibly thankful to my wife, family, friends, clients and colleagues for cheering me on before, during and after my decision to leap, and for continuing to support me throughout the past year as I rebuilt my business and my life outside of work.

I have learned or rediscovered a lot about work/life balance, efficient and effective communication, believe in self, celebrating success, patience, passion, positivity, relationship building, laughter, faith, creative outlets and serving my community. It has been motivating, rejuvenating and exciting. If you are in need of a little motivational nudge into 2017, I offer you these nuggets of truth from the last 366 days of my life…

  • When you believe in yourself it is much easier to notice all of the other people who believe in you as well.
  • Never stop asking for help. We fool ourselves into thinking we are “bothering” those who have the ability or opportunity to help us succeed. It is a crippling mindset and complete nonsense. Most of us derive joy from helping others achieve and don’t think twice when asked to do so. And, other than proving yourself wrong, what do you have to lose?
  • Build real relationships based on honesty and interest rather than utility and expectation. If you do you will find that #1 and #2 are even easier to accomplish.
  • Don’t tell yourself “it isn’t worth the risk” if it really IS worth happy-new-year-2017-images-for-whatsapp-2the risk. Sit down and take the time to calculate the potential risk (and reward) and compare that to the status quo. Then make a decision and own it.
  • If you need a motivational read, my two favorite books of 2016 are actually both from 2010 (I guess that’s what happens when you are too busy for self-reflection and self-improvement). It’s Not Just Who You Know, by Tommy Spaulding, and The Happiness Advantage by Shawn Achor offer perspectives on work, success, relationships and happiness which have benefited me greatly over the past year. I highly recommend them to those who haven’t already picked them up. Tommy Spaulding’s latest book, The Heart-Led Leader was released in 2016 as well. Another gem.
  • Action is much more powerful than anger. Not everything about 2016 was sunshine and roses. Some of what happened this year will take years for many of us to understand, unpack or undo. But, hiding under that disappointment is an opportunity. An opportunity to become a stronger person. An opportunity to stand up and live your beliefs and values. An opportunity to affect change. An opportunity to use your skills, expertise and experience to help others improve their lives. An opportunity to change your approach.

2017 is an opportunity waiting to be seized and a mountain in need of a good climb. So, grab a pair of hiking boots, a strong walking stick and a good Sherpa to help guide the way. After all, the alternative is the atrophy of inaction or a long, lonely and unnecessary walk around the mountain.

Thank you for reading, Happy Holidays, have a safe New Year’s Eve and a happy and healthy 2017!

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