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The New Year…A Time to Look Back and a Time to Look Forward

December and January are the months during the year that I tend to do my personal housekeeping. I look back to achievements I made, areas that I want to improve upon, the blessings that have occurred and the hardships that were endured in the eleven months prior. I tend to think that I wasn’t very successful or as productive as I could have been. Did I do everything that I wanted to do? Or did I do everything I should have done? It is hard to remember as time seems to pass more quickly each year.
 
This year I seemed to be a bit tougher on myself than I normal. Then, I pulled out my iPhone and started scrolling through images. I still haven’t figured out how to move photos from my phone to my computer, so needless to say I had a year in photos already built for me!
 
Hence, New Year’s Resolution #1, learn how to remove photos from your phone.  Anyway, as I began to scroll through this past year I was both surprised and delighted to see I had documented much of what I couldn’t remember. Snowmobiling on New Year’s Eve in Central Oregon, landing my job at ElderCounsel in February, celebrating my birthday with family in March and it goes on throughout the year.
 
Which brings me to New Year’s resolution #2…..every month to take at least six to ten photos, download them from my phone to my computer and begin to make a photo book for the year. In December, I will have a nice documentation of my year in photos. I will look forward to looking back on the year and remembering some of the highlights in photos.
 
My next thought was why stop there? I decided I am going to incorporate this into my work life as well. The year passes so quickly I think we forget the achievements and challenges that we tackled throughout the year. I have calendared fifteen minutes at the end of every month to look back on the month and take note of what I achieved and what I might be able to do better in the coming months.  At this time, I will also establish goals for the month ahead. I guess you could say that I am incorporating “monthly” resolutions instead of one or two “New Year’s” resolutions.
 
I think a “New Year’s Resolution” is often a loftier goal and we lose sight of the small steps it takes to achieve that goal. That said, I did set a few bigger goals for myself in 2014, but have also documented the smaller steps it is going to take each month to achieve those goals. There are many tools and applications available for tracking progress, however I tend to use a fairly low tech method- pen and paper. There seems to be something powerful in the process of writing down what I would like to accomplish rather than typing it or entering it into an app that makes it stick. Try it….you may be surprised!
 
A few final thoughts on the subject…..I googled “New Year’s Resolutions” and came up with a few blogs you may find interesting. Here are the links:
 
http://www.ibtimes.com/how-keep-new-years-resolutions-5-tips-make-lasting-changes-2014-1526664
 
http://elitedaily.com/life/25-new-years-resolutions-every-person-should-actually-make-for-2014/
 
http://business.time.com/2014/01/01/10-apps-to-help-you-keep-your-new-years-resolutions/
 
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/08/sunday-review/new-years-resolutions-stick-when-willpower-is-reinforced.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
 
Wishing you all a healthy and happy New Year!
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