Another New Year
Until 1582, New Year’s Day was actually the 1st of March (hence Dec-ember, having been the 10th month). Although it’s really just another day, retreating festive decorations seem to give way to a clear run of opportunity to get to work on new goals and new hopes for the year to come. After the surprises of 2016 and no less than a bit of excess over Christmas and New Year (there’s a reason I didn’t write this on the 1st of January) I’m jumping on the bandwagon with my own goals for the year to come.
Resolving revolutionary resolutions
Alright, so they might not be revolutionary resolutions, but they’ll hopefully be at least a bit progressive! I’m a big believer in time management (I know, sigh), and one of the ways I like to ‘make good use of time’ is to listen to podcasts while walking and running. This one was surprisingly good and struck a bit of chord, given the timing as I took a walk on New Year’s Day.
In it, Laura Vanderkam suggests that we never really lack time, rather we just don’t consider the activity a priority. We can do anything we want, if we want to do it enough. Based on studies of ‘successful people’ she suggests that they are more often than not, simply good at prioritising. Every decision is a choice of a way to spend our time.
She also gives a structure for organising priorities, and suggests that in each of her 3 categories, we’ll be most balanced and happy if we find a ‘priority’ to put above all else in each.
I’m going to try this ‘structure’ this year and see how it goes. If can make good use of the 8736 hours this year, then great. I’m keeping them flexible and not too specific as if 2016 taught me anything, it’s that you can think you’re heading in one direction one month and you’re half way across Europe the next (and that’s great). And if it doesn’t work out, there’s always next year!
1) Invest more in people who invest in me
I’ve not always felt I’ve given the people who give their time and energy to me as much in return and have suffered for it. With all of the technologies available it’s amazing how you can still lose contact with people you hold dear but perhaps lose pace with.
Taking 20-30minutes every day to consciously give someone my time who needs it should be a goal.
2) Listen in proportion to my ears and mouth
I’m more and more interested in current affairs, forming opinions and developing new areas of interest I’d never have dreamed of 2 years ago. But to make sure my view is balanced and that I can make valuable contributions to debates, I need to keep a balanced perspective too.
As my mum told me (and will be rather pleased I’m taking it on board), you’ve got 2 ears and 1 mouth – use them in proportion.
3) Get my 10km time to below 40 minutes and take at least 10 minutes of my last half marathon time
Perhaps my only quantifiable priority: let’s see if I can sick to the training schedule…
4) Keep this blog going
Of course (and hopefully the readership!)
5) Make sure that I’m in a job I’m happy in, where I can truly say my responsibilities make a real difference for the better by the end of the year
Without specifying a particular role, I’m trying to stay open to possibility whilst clarifying for myself what that needs to have, so that when opportunities arise, I’ll know which way to go.
About 2750 of those 8736 hours of the year will be spent sleeping. Beyond that however, even discounting hours at work (probably about 1800), travelling, eating (1100 hours) and ‘miscellaneous things’, I’m left with thousands of hours to work specifically towards these 5 things. Hopefully 2017 will be full of surprises and maybe even more achievements than those I’ve prioritised above. Anyhow, I’ll only be able to let you know in about 8700 hours/52 weeks/363 days!
P.S. I’d be interested to know what others think/their priorities for this year too.