If You Don't Remember, You Don't Succeed

After the ball dropped and my wife and I sat sipping Bellinis at home to celebrate (watch out we get crazy), we talked about our plans for the new year. It was a good moment, one in which we discussed not only what we wanted individually, but also what we wanted for us as a couple.

 Photo via  Flickr

Photo via Flickr

Later that night, as I sat in bed thinking about the year ahead and reminiscing about the year gone by, I started to wonder: Was there something I wanted to get done in 2016 that I didn't do?

It was almost like when being back in school and feeling like I forgot to do a huge project that was due the next day.

There were some small items on my todo list that I hadn't gotten to yet, some recycling that needed to be taken out, a suitcase that sat half unpacked from Christmas travels, maybe the cards I was supposed to write. But was there something big? Was there something that I had committed to completing before the clock struck midnight in 2017?

The truth is I didn't know because whatever my plans were on Jan. 1, 2016, they were long forgotten. I'm sure I made a few, but after 365 days, there was no way I remembered the all of the specifics.

I don't always make resolutions, as it's hard to say that I'm going to do something just because it's a new year. However, I have made some in the past, and truthfully it worked out alright. In 2013, I had a single resolution: Go with the flow.

It was simple, I was just going to take life as it was and attempt to go with it instead of fight against it. It turned out to be a great year to do that, as within the first week I went on my first date with the woman who would later become my wife. And whether it was meeting her parents later that week, or planning a vacation together just a few months later, everything was possible because I stuck to my resolution.

But what made it easy to stick to that one in particular? I repeated it to myself a lot. In fact, I repeated it All. The Time. It's amazing how often life throws curve balls at you when you're committed to just keeping it moving.

However, what plans I made for myself in 2016 did not stick. I didn't say them often. I didn't write them down.

Whatever you decide to make of 2017, write it down. Write it somewhere you will see often and can reflect on. Take the time to see if you're accomplishing what you set out to do. Life gets busy. It's easy to work with our heads down and think we're moving in one direction, only to look up and find ourselves completely away from where we meant to be. That our effort was wasted.

Take notes, reflect on them, and look forward to December 31, 2017 when you can know without a doubt that you've done what you've set out to do.

- Ryan

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