As it’s December, I decided to write a bit more of a personal blog, looking back at the year that was.
The year started off spectacular, celebrating with our long-term University friend Robbert and his beautiful family in Peru. It was pure joy, a great reunion with lots of love, fun and laughter.
Very soon though things were about to change...
My father in law got seriously ill and unfortunately passed away a couple of months later. Just two weeks after, I lost my great friend Ruth in an avalanche in the Himalayas.
Both experiences rocked me to the core and filled me with enormous sadness and grief. However these experiences also gave me a new perspective, hope and strength.
It made me reflect on the continuous cycle of endings and new beginnings, light after dark, day after night, spring after winter etc. and even joy after loss. There is a Dutch saying ‘There is always sunshine after rain’ and it is so true.
Why do some endings and beginnings feel natural and we seem to flow through them, whereas others feel hard, frustrating and painful?
I once again realised that the holding on to the old is often where the suffering is and that once we accept & let go, we create space for a sliver of hope to shine through. This sliver of hope then is the fertile ground for a positive new beginning to emerge. It really is the continuous cycle of growth, decay, endings and new beginnings.
Obviously in both these situations the endings were unexpected and forced upon us however the process of accepting and letting go, instead of holding on is the same in situations where we do end something actively ourselves.
Before endings, there can be this stage of tumult and even frustration. Things don’t seem to work as well anymore, or don’t feel as aligned anymore. Sometimes the signs are very clear and other times they are more subtle. Then we need to dig a bit deeper to get to the root cause.
I started to think about what I had been holding on to in business and life that was no longer serving, and I started to become more discerning about how and with whom I was spending my precious time.
We all know the 20/80 rule; 20% Of our actions create 80% of our output, 20% of our connections create 80% of our value.
When we work with clients on their marketing strategy, we always keep this rule in the back of our minds, as it helps us to become laser focused on the right marketing priorities for their business and their unique situation. Less is definitely more, especially as nowadays most companies are struggling with the plethora of different marketing options out there.
With 2019 coming to an end and 2020 just around the corner, it is a perfect time to reflect on the year that was and next to celebrating your wins and successes, explore what you or your business can let go of. In that way, you can create space for the new to come to fruition.
Here are 3 questions that will help you figure out how to create that space for renewal with ease and grace (both for your business and your personal life)
Q1: Whom and how can I or our business add the most value? And what gives me and my team the most enjoyment and fulfilment?
This helps you focus on your ideal target market & people, as well as the right activities that you are most passionate about. Remember that you’ll add the most value when you are in your element. When you enjoy what you do, things (seem to) go easier and you’ll feel more in the flow
Q2: When and how do I feel a disconnect in my body?
You know that niggling feeling we sometimes get in our stomach when something is off? Our bodies are so intelligent and often give us signs, before our mind catches on. Sometimes we can’t even explain it, something just feels wrong or something feels very right. Tapping into this intelligence can be very empowering and helps us move in the right direction.
Q3: What transitions in my life and business have felt natural and what transitions have felt hard? What can I do to make these transitions easier?
Transition periods can either be exciting or daunting. If we can give ourselves the right tools to make letting go easier, transitions naturally become easier. To figure out what works for you, look at your pattern of behaviour in sticky transitional situations. By becoming aware of your ‘go to’ pattern or default pattern (it can be anything like eg. procrastination, running away, the urge to drink, smoke or eat unhealthy foods, getting angry or being more irritated etc.) you can change it.
Don’t worry if you don’t know the answers to these questions straight away. I can assure you that by simply posing the questions and not worrying about the outcome, the answers will come to you naturally. Just give it a bit of time…perfect for the holiday season.
I wish you and your families a beautiful ending of 2109 and a wonderful beginning of 2020!Tags: business planning, marketing planning