Gotta tell you, a little chill ran up my spine yesterday morning, as I read the WordPress Daily Prompt: “Write up a mid-year State Of My Year post”. I know, it doesn’t seem like such a big deal. Certainly nothing to get into a sweat over. I agree.
“So”, you’re probably asking, “What’s with the chills?”
It just brought me back to the days when I was a partner in an ad agency. The half-way point in the year, was when we did our ‘reforecasting’. Any idea what I’m talking about?
Well, it is sort of like a state-of-the-year. Financially-speaking. It’s the time when management adjust their projected revenues, expenses and anticipated bottom line, based on actual numbers. To see if you’re still on track with the plan you committed to, at the beginning of the year. To see if you’re doing better than plan; or, worse. To figure out how you’re going to end the year; and how you’ll get there.
This is not an exercise to be taken lightly. It’s serious stuff. And the last thing you want is to have to tell your boss, or your Board of Directors or your shareholders, you’re going to have to re-adjust down. So unless you’ve had a better-than-good year to the midway point, with equally good prospects for the balance of the year, most executives dread this time of year. They know they’re going to get nailed.
That’s why the chills.
But I’m a freelancer now. And this isn’t about ‘numbers’. No need to get spooked.
Then I wondered, well, if it isn’t going to be about numbers, what will I talk about? What would my half-way-through-state-of-the-year blog post be about? And that’s when I decided it would be fun to go back to the blog post I wrote last December 20, when I talked about what I hoped to accomplish in 2013. To see how I was doing.
Depends how you look at it …
Before you say, “I could have told you, New Year’s Resolutions don’t work”, take a pause. I wasn’t making resolutions. I was talking about what’s important to me. What I wanted to commit myself to.
There were three:
First off was my desire to volunteer in Africa. I had a couple of ideas. Nothing concrete. Just thoughts. Have I gone yet? No. What I have realized, though, is, I have been trying to create my ideal volunteering experience. It’s not about me. It’s about what the need is. So I have to re-adjust my thinking. I have to look into volunteering opportunities in Africa that already exist; and find one or two where I believe I can make a meaningful contribution.
To me, this is significant progress. Because really, what I was hoping to accomplish over there was not realistic. Now I am on the right track. Will I get to Africa by the end of the year? It’s doubtful, I think. But I’m actually a lot closer than I’ve been.
Next I expressed my desire to travel more. After a lot of soul-searching I now know what I was looking for was more of an adventure, than a trip. Picking up and leaving home. Moving somewhere foreign. Becoming an expat and writing about it. Honestly, this is something I should have done years ago, when I was younger. At this stage of my life I should have a home base, right here, in Toronto, and travel where and when I feel like it. But know I’m always coming home. Where anything and everything I might ever need is readily available.
Another decision made. So I’m pleased. Now, at least, I know what I’m looking for. And what I can strike off the list.
Last, but not least, I said I wanted to finish the book I’m writing. What’s most exciting is, I’ve had two significant breakthroughs. I’d stopped writing because something just wasn’t feeling right to me, but I didn’t know what. I have finally figured it out; and I have started re-writing. I could get a first draft done by the end of the year or, at the latest, during the first quarter of next year.
A major step forward.
My mid-year state-of-the-year. There you have it. What makes me the happiest is, I have spent a lot of time thinking about all three of these ‘dreams’ of mine. Critical thinking. Re-reading that December 20 year-end blog proved it to me. At the time I talked about how important these initiatives were to me. It’s good to see I’ve given them the time and consideration they deserve. I’m satisfied with where I’m at. And I’m looking forward to seeing them through. I’ve decided finishing my book comes first. It’s my first priority. The rest will follow in due course. Everything doesn’t have to happen at the same time.
Sounds like a plan, to me.
What about you? Where do you stand?