I thought I'd attempt to capture some of the cool things that happened in 2017 before it's all over and we are onto new things in 2018.
But then I tried to write 17 things and got performance anxiety so I decided to just write what came to mind. Here goes!
1) Doing it alone just doesn't work.
So many times I've had to learn this lesson! When will I learn it for real? This year it was my business and my health I needed help with the most, but also asking for help in general in my personal life either from my husband, from friends or by hiring a cleaner, it all made things better!
2) Trial your ideal life
Everything you do should be an experiment to see if it's what you really want. Do you think you want to move to Spain? Really? Why not go there for a month to see if that's true! This year we trialed going to NZ for longer periods for the kids to go to school and so far it's working in it's current form!
3) Baby steps work
In January, I took a baby step and organised a small get together of entrepreneurial women in Kyoto. Then I took another baby step and did one in Okinawa, then I helped someone else to run their retreat. Then I worked with a photographer to hold a retreat outside of my own specialty. Then I even had people come from overseas to join a retreat. Every step was one small step forward along the way I built up my confidence in what I can do.
4) Blocks will appear
Most of the time they are just you getting in your own way. 99% of the time. I even had a little freak out that people were trusting me with their money and that responsibility took getting used to!
5) Schedule in off time
I realised that every time I did a retreat, I needed to block out the next week to recover. I've also noticed that my participants, when they get home from a retreat, need a week to recover themselves, too! Not just physically, but mentally! Some of the mental shifts that happen during the retreats are quite big!
6) Body comes first
No matter what else I've got going on the schedule, I HAVE to look after my body first. Not only does a healthy body mean I can physically be there, but if I'm not feeling great, my mental state means I can't do my best work. I've got my first every 1/2 marathon coming up in New Zealand in February! So looking forward to completing that!
7) I listen to inappropriate music
and hope my kids don't notice! But seriously it helps me to get things done! If I'm trying to write a pitch to someone or make a request, I turn on my best running music and I'm suddenly feeling like I can do it. Favourite ok for small people's ears songs of 2017 include: Havana by Camila Cabello, Attention by Charlie Puth.
8) Everything is always working out for me
It's ok to believe this. It's not going to send extra bad luck your way.
9) Good things take time
This I know. This is often resist, wanting it to be happening now. But I can sense that things are happening that I don't "see" yet but the wheels somewhere are turning and in the mean time I need to keep taking a step forward and then another.
10) Never ever assume
My father always used to say that to assume makes and "ass" out of "u" and "me". Thanks for that gem Dad. I'm really really working on this! Soooo hard!!
11) Surround yourself with uplifting people
Minimise your time with those who drag you down.
12) Nature is where it's at
So often this came up for me this year, needing to be near beautiful nature. When I was back on the West Coast of New Zealand visiting my NZ family or skiing up Mt Daisen in Totttori prefecture, I felt free and happy. Nature is good for the soul.
13) Photography is not an unlearnable skill!
I've always struggled with taking decent photos, but once I went with Tia on our Capture Kyoto retreat, I realised I just need to get more curious about this thing called photography!
14) Iwaki is my "Anaba"
"Anaba" is Japanese for a special place, "off the beaten track". I'd inadvertently adopted the local's view that Iwaki is inferior. Actually it has a LOT going for it and so I'm making it a personal mission to bring more people to this cool little place, not that far from Tokyo.
15) Is it true?
This is my question of the year. Every time I think something is "reality" but it's not serving me, I ask myself this question. Often the answer is "no", so I can move through whatever it is. Thanks to Byron Katie and The Work, for this.
16) I am an athlete
Didn't really want to write this one but over the last few months as running 10km became my new normal I decided to shift my identity away from "Mum running in preparation to escape potential tsunami" - my ininitail reason for starting this whole thing, to that of "athlete". Scary.
17) See what happens when you just take the pressure off
I was having performance anxiety at the start of writing this, but when I took the pressure off to see just how many I could write, I did it. Let's take the pressure off and give ourselves a chance to do the things we can do.