This is the time of year when many of us have time to do some thinking - the challenge is making yourself think in a meaningful way. This is what worked for me:
1. I wiped the slate clean - literally. I painted one of the walls in my office with blackboard paint and I use it for work in progress, ideas, brain dumps, lists etc. By the end of the year it was crammed full of crossings out, scribbles and things left undone. After taking a photo (as a backup), I cleaned the board completely. This is such a liberating thing to do, I feel like I have a whole year of possibilities rather than a list of unfinished tasks.
2. I cleared the backlog. My list of unfinished tasks I either finished or decided they were clearly not important. Projects that might come off one day were followed up or discarded.
3. I got realistic. The reading I had not done was, like the projects, either not interesting enough or not worth my while. I shredded copies of things I can find on my computer, read a few things that looked good and recycled the rest.
4. I themed up. Just as I often do with clients, I decided on a theme for the year - Engage, educate, excite. 2018 for me will be a year when I engage - with the world, with people, with ideas, when I educate - others about how to grow their businesses, myself to fill in the gaps and get the brain firing and excite - I do not need to work just for the money, I want to work on things and with people that are exciting and excited.
5. I built in balance rather than leaving it to chance. My board now has the major headings to match my theme - Learning - as I start my journey of international education, Ideas - so nothing gets forgotten and New Directions - possibilities that present themselves or I go looking for. Importantly then there are two "To Do" columns - one For Others and one For Me, to make sure I look after myself and my business as well as others.
So - whether it is a giant blackboard, whiteboard or a piece of paper, when you wipe your slate clean what will you put on it for this year?