As we all start the 2022 section of our unique ‘game of life’ campaign, then it’s only natural to take stock of where we are on the board and also where we are aiming for!
Although usually I’m not one to ponder such matters (and I do hate the mass commercially enforced participation events such as 'Dry January' / 'Veganary' / 'Movember' / 'Wacaday' etc) , I thought that this time I would make an exception (new year, new me and all that jazz). It’s as well a worn term as a wet Weetabix, but the years (and decades..) do fly by and I figure now is as good enough point as any to pause for a few seconds in mindful contemplation.
2021 was particularly eventful for me in a number of ways. The ‘biggy’ being when I decided in the middle of it (almost…) to quit my office job and set myself up solely to my own devices. There were various reasons behind this decision , not least because I did feel that I was considerably under-appreciated (I’m not saying that my employers used to gouge my eyelids out with Kerr Plunk sticks and try to force feed me with Huel or anything , it was more a case of feeling rather taken for granted - just like Bagpuss sitting in a corner , and nobody noticing I was there, gathering dust.)
More importantly though, I felt I could achieve more satisfaction and challenge my own natural boundaries that had built up inside me during the last few years of stagnation and stability. It was now or never and if I didn’t try my luck and come out from under the warm comfort of the safety blanket, I may have encountered bitter regret further down the line.
The transition to self-employed has not been a smooth path (in fact at times it’s unrecognisable to any that I’ve trodden on before – one that has the ability to change it’s direction, texture and gradient at will... a composition equivalent to that of Manimal) but it’s a life-changing decision I’m still glad that I made.
‘Learn as you go’, has never been a more truer phrase, and I’ve felt like a new kid eating Crayola on my first day at school more times than I can remember. However, for all the ups and downs, I’ve met a lot of good people along the way who’ve provided me with some sound guidance and advice. There has been smatterings of bull s*** too, but you always take the rough with the tumble.
Anyway, the last year has seen me get off the ground and work with some really great clients who do appreciate me on a level that I’ve not experienced much of in recent times. That’s one good thing I can take on board and vow to spread the seed of Liam, assisting more business owners in the current year with my unique brilliance.
So then, if my first resolution is to build up my own business affairs and help more clients to achieve their goals - then my second resolution has to emanate from the inside , outwards. This may not be a particularly original concept for a new version of me, but I’m taking a solemn vow to cut down on alcohol consumption by 75% (or so) and commit time to doing substantially more exercise.
Just to be clear, I’ve never been someone who needs to start the day off with a Marlboro in one hand and a bottle of Smirnoff in the other, but I am partial to the odd glass / bottle of red wine. However, it doesn’t help with productivity (especially as I’ve grown older) and having a clearer mind more often than not should work wonders and help me to focus more. I should also add that I’m equally not ‘one of those’ who purchases an annual gym membership in January and then attends one and a half times in the first month never to be seen again (in fact I’m ‘that’ one who is whingeing about them when I struggle for a parking space or have to bloody queue up for the treadmill at the start of the year.)
I did used to run (well jog..) a lot more than I do now, but I’ve always been (albeit less frequently, recently) someone who does the odd 5k a week. I want to try increase this positive habit proportionally to the time I would normally waste buying / drinking and recovering from wine at the weekends.
Lastly (I’ve only done three, because if I try and make a squillion resolutions I’m less inclined to stick to any at all for more than a day or so) I want to be more social. Not particularly venturing out more, but attempting to make a concerted effort throughout 2022 to keep in touch with the people I know (even (and especially) if I don’t feel like it). The pandemic has possibly made me become a tad more distant with friends and family. To give you a gameshow analogy , what I want to do is take steps to get closer to the Chaser and casually catch up with others more than I am inclined to do now. It’s become easier and more excusable not to do this with my new way of working and factoring in the on and off Covid situation.
So there’s my 3 personal (achievable?) propositions – naturally I will let you all know how they are progressing.
Finally, I wish everyone a rather belated Happy 2022. Get yourself strapped in for the rollercoaster journey, (slightly) further towards the day of reckoning. Whatever happens, I have a feeling that this year will probably be one for the memory bank..