Thursday, December 08, 2016

2016 - Lessons learned

My year at a glance...

 I think I started 2016 in retirement mode.  I’d just turned 65 and it seemed time to hand over the reigns and with that mindset I started the year looking at transition, at moving on.   But that was not to be  and now as 2016 comes to a close, I’ve got my mojo back and am raring to go for another season. 

Life is fragile.  I learned this at the beginning of the year when our 32 year old nephew-in-law died of cancer.  Far too young and far too soon.  

We wrapped up the year with the sudden death of my colleague and friend Diane McGee.  Both deaths serve to remind me that life is short and to focus on what you want to do.

When it is important, people show up.   On the worst snowstorm of the season it was the launch date of the One Red Lipstick book.  We had 80 people registered and four speakers who were travelling a distance. Over 60 folks turned up, as well as all four speakers.

Be a role model.  The message behind One Red Lipstick is that we need to step up and be role models for the generations behind us.  We often don’t realize the wisdom we can share.  I’ve since signed up to be a mentor in a couple of programs.

People come into your life for a reason. Pay attention.   Learn what you need to learn, give what you can give. Enjoy the relationship and make the most of your time together.  

Never say never.   I had declared to myself that our conference (the 10th) would be my last one.  Well that lasted about a day after the event and then I got into gear to plan the conference for 2017.

You don’t know what you don’t know. Especially when you start a new business.  Launching Full Circle Publishing has been an exciting and humbling experience. It’s not easy to be back in the beginner’s seat.

Be careful what you wish for.  Full Circle Publishing was to be my “retirement” project – something I could do from anywhere and which I could manage in terms of size.  In three months we have published five books, with more in the wings.

Smiling can take you a long way.  On our trip to Nova Scotia we received such great customer service.  People took an interest in you, smiled and were happy to be helping you. 

Read the small print.  When you go over documents quickly you can miss important stuff, which can cost you money. And it did.

Laughter is good medicine.   By co-incidence we had our best man and bridesmaid staying with us in time for our 44th wedding anniversary. We spent an amazing weekend together.  I don’t think any of us have laughed so much in years.  By far the highlight of the year.

Be pragmatic.  When your plans fall through, while disappointing at the time, you need to come up with Plan B and move on. Wallowing in what could have been doesn’t get you too far.  Plus who knows, maybe Plan B is better.

Delegate. It’s not all about me.   I am excited about 2017 – we have some new programs in the works.  I’ve learned this year to delegate and I intend to do more of that in the year ahead.  It’s only taken me 14 years to realize I don’t have to, nor should I do everything!

That’s it.  A month by month take on my year. 

It’s been a busy one – and the one constant is relationships, because it’s the relationships we have with our family, friends, colleagues and customers that can make or break our businesses.

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