As we prepare to embrace a shiny new year, with its new car smell and endless possibilities, its a great time to revisit our goals and create new ones that will give us a 2009 to be remembered!
Speaking of remembered, when all is said and done, how do you want to be remembered? How will the final words of your success story read?
When I reflect on those questions, I can't help but think of Stephen Covey's The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People, specifically habit #2 . . . Begin with the end in mind!
To help us begin with the necessary awareness, Covey offers an exercise that is going to bum the hell out you, but you need to do it. I promise you that if you take the time to reflect on how your journey ends, its much easier to secure a map to get there!
Here goes (have your tissues and Prozac handy)
It's a few years in the future and you are attending a funeral. The place is packed and there is a feeling of love, respect and warmth. After sitting there for a bit, you come to the realization that you are witnessing your own funeral. People have come from great distances to pay their respects to you.
Four people come forward to say a few words about you. Each one of them represents a different aspect of your life, the sum of which represents you as the total person. There is one person from your family, one of your friends, someone you work with and someone from either your church, favorite charity or community.
What would they need to say about you in order for you to feel that you have lived the life you deserved?
I did this exercise a few weeks ago and it really knocked me on my ass! I don't know if it was the reality check on my lack of invincibility or . . . the fact that I was failing in some of those areas! You see, I know what I want those eulogies to sound like, but truth be told, if that day came today, the eulogies might sound a bit different, be a bit shorter and the church, unfortunately a bit emptier!
So here's what I chose to do about it (after coming down from the ledge) :
- I chose to create a set of goals (a map) that would ultimately bring me to my final destination by beginning with the end in mind!
- I broke them up into the 4 groups: Family, Friends, Business and Spiritual/Community
- I took immediate action in every one of those areas
I now begin my day by looking at those goals to make sure I am living my life more intentionally. I make sure that I stay in control, avoid seat of my pants actions, winging it or anything that even resembles complacency!
How am I going to live today in order to create the tomorrow I'm committed to?
Wishing you and your family a happy and healthy new year with endless opportunities and possibilities!