Each year I take some time out from my holiday and review how the year has gone. I look at what I feel I’ve done well, and I look at what I think could use some more work, or could have been done differently.
Last year I did it by hand, this year I decided to use a mindmapping program called MindManager just for something different.
It didn’t take me long to come to the conclusion that this past year looked nothing like I thought it would at the beginning of the year. The biggest change to life as I knew it was that I started full time work, and never before have I appreciated the opportunity to take a holiday as much as I do now . The other big thing that has happened in this past 12 months is the spiritual adventure that God has launched me on, and that will continue into the future. I am on the road to living a faith that I feel more accurately reflects the heart of God. I am seriously excited about the opportunities, and honestly, a little lonely on the trail at times. It has been a tough year of being remodelled inside and out.
I also noticed that almost 100% of my creative outlets were pushed aside when I got busy and therefore tired. That’s not a good thing. I have found that it’s easy to get lazy with the things that feed my soul and raise my joy levels when I get busy. These are the things that don’t complain when I let them slip until it’s too late and I start to feel as though I am spiralling out of control. I was supposed to be figuring out the whole balance thing this year. That didn’t happen.
I have also come to the conclusion that this method of reviewing my year and the flow on into planning the year ahead is too nebulous, unfocused and unmeasurable. (I know there are a lot of Christians that don’t believe in planning, Mac Lake sums up my thoughts on planning beautifully and more eloquently than I can in his post “Planning Good or Evil?”) So this year I will be trialling Chris Guillebeau’s approach and setting some more concrete goals and mapping the steps required to achieve these goals. I am hoping that having these things laid out in front of me will counteract the brain atrophy that occurs when I get into the routine of work and life in general and it all takes on a life of its own that I don’t control. I expect that exercise will take me a good week or so.