As is no doubt true for many of us, I started off last year with the best of intentions. While I am proud of what I accomplished (despite 2020 being, well, 2020) it was not without its challenges. My first post last year outlined my plans to revisit how I plan, how I organize and how I manage. A check-in on how that went—spoiler alert: inconsistently—and what I’m doing differently this year.
2020 wasn’t just an extraordinary year of events, politics and pandemics. It was an interesting year for writing, as well. Things started off slowly here. The reset that we all sought as a result of the pandemic, though, was its own reset for my writing. Join me as I explore the articles you enjoyed and valued most, as well as those that most inspired and engaged me.
2020 has been a year. For all of us. It has been challenging, and difficult, and stressful and mired in uncertainty. We have confronted a pandemic, and the fraying of the social fabric, and more politics than many of us have tolerance for. While 2021 won’t be a clean slate, and we have work yet to resolve, I’m heading into the year with some degree of confidence and enthusiasm. Success will take work and effort, but I’m willing and prepared to roll up my sleeves and meet the year head-on.
Your approach and appetite for learning says a great deal about who you are and how you approach your work and your life. We often view success as being defined by accomplishment—work done, status attained and accomplishment realized. In reality, much of satisfaction comes from actually doing the work, immersing yourself in experiences and challenges and formulating ways to realize accomplishment. Nowhere is this more true than in situations where success requires learning and growth.
I write a lot. That is an unavoidable truth. I’ve been putting my thoughts on this site on a mostly-weekly basis for several years now. While having an audience is valuable—and I’m grateful for the feedback that I do receive from readers—in many ways the person that I am most writing for is myself. I write to think, and I think to learn. Sometimes what I have to say surprises me as much as it might stimulate thought for someone else. And that is entirely the point.
Much is made of the value of stretch goals. Managers love them, consultants pontificate about them and employees are victimized by them. There is irony in stretch goals, also. Those those people and organizations that are best able to leverage stretch goals often don’t. What constitutes “stretch” is variable, and varies for each of us. They are not necessarily attainable, at times they aren’t even reasonable, and in all instances we are walking the razor’s edge between success and failure. We need to be okay with that. Especially now.