The turn of a new year is often an exciting thing. Either you’re ready for the current year to be over because of struggle or sadness, or you can’t wait to expand on the year. I’m a mixed bag on those two reasons. I won’t complain about 2016, but it was an eventful year for us. From starting the year off in the hospital with our youngest, to leaving the company I started, to buying a new fixer-upper, to buying another business. We’ve worked our tails off and enjoyed the journey. Some parts were really bad, while other parts were exciting. I’m really looking forward to 2017.
Every year I pick a word for the year. A word that has meaning for my life, one that challenges me, one that further defines who I am. I take a bit of time to consider my path, where God is leading, understand where I’ve been. Think about who I want to become. In 2014, my word was Focus. I wanted to focus on what was important in my life. In 2015, my word was Clarity. I wanted to work on creating clarity in my life, in my words, in my actions, my conversations, etc. I even started meeting with a few fellow business friends and we called the group Clarity. It’s funny how that word keeps popping up in my life. When I found myself in a conversation, that word would come to mind and I would intentionally take the extra time to create clarity in that conversation and that relationship. Every time I followed that, it made a big difference.
So, 2017 is upon us (literally today in 1/1/17). I considered a couple words for the year. I believe the path I’m on points me to one of them…
I think technology and social media has one big flaw. It allows us to connect with more people, but only at a surface level. I spend a lot of my time working in those two areas, so it’s easy for me to develop surface level relationships with a lot of people. My goal for the year is to cultivate deeper relationships, deeper knowledge, and deeper skill. Deeper is similar to Clarity in that I hope it will make me take time to understand someone else more, develop my skills a little more, serve a client even better, listen to my wife or daughters a bit longer. I want to dive into my two businesses more and make them better at the core. I want to know my wife and daughters at a deeper level. I want deeper relationships with my team members and friends. I want to create more value with those I serve. These things take time and effort that’s not usually afforded. In a hustle-economy, slowing down to go deeper isn’t a comfortable option. But I’m a big believer that we only grow when we’re stretched and uncomfortable.