This week marks the end of a decade and the 10th anniversary of the Life Makeover newsletters. It's been quite a journey and I look forward to continuing to share stories, ideas, and inspiration with you in 2010.
For many, 2009 can't end soon enough. Several people have mentioned that they're looking forward to a fresh start in 2010. While I love the clean-slate feeling that comes with January 1st, I've also learned how important it is to reflect on the past - especially the most difficult times - to capture and catalog the life lessons that will serve us moving forward.
Here are some of the lessons I'll take from 2009 to help me enjoy an even better next year:
1. Less is so much more. The less I do things like spend money, over work, eat, fret, try to change the unchangeable, or take care of others who need to learn to take care of themselves, the better I feel. Life Lesson: When in doubt, do less.
2. Add the right kind of "more" to life. The more I laugh, connect deeply with others, get inspired, fill my mind with good thoughts, move my body, or balance work with rest, the more my life reflects my values and the happier I feel. Life Lesson: Know your "right kind of more" and add some of it to your life every day.
3. Stop waiting to live. Over the last year I've started paying closer attention to (and acting on) the small voice inside that tugs at me to do the little things that make me happy. Calling a friend with a last minute dinner invitation, seeing a movie in the middle of the day, or enjoying the sights and sounds of nature by taking a walk before I start my workday, are now the kind of priorities that make it into my schedule first rather than after the "important things" are done. Life Lesson: Don't put your quiet desires on hold anymore. Do them first.
What lessons will you take from 2009? How can the difficulties you've faced inform the changes you'll make in the New Year? In what ways will your priorities change in 2010? Consider these questions as you complete the final Take Action Challenge of 2009 and have a wonderful New Year!
Take Action Challenge
Sometime over the next week, do yourself a favor and consider the questions above. Write down your answers in a journal or notebook and challenge yourself to identify three of your own life lessons that will guide you toward an even better 2010. Then, shorten these life lessons into one-liners so you can print them out and keep them in view.