Friday, 8 January 2010

No Regrets, Only Lessons From Another Year at the Fair

"New Years Resolutions" ..I've not checked, but I wouldn't be surprised if a week into 2010 this is still trending on Twitter. Come Jan 1st most of us make them, break them, then forget them. Starting with the infamous groan on New Year's Day "I'm never drinking again!" and rapidly cycling through a series of health & well being promises, visions of prolificacy, of rediscovering your work ethic, keeping better control of your finances and acquiring new skills.. every year the same core aims make our lists.

I duly made mine last year, 10 in total, which took pride of place pinned to my office wall all year. I managed to succeed at an impressive 5 of them, very nearly achieved a further 2, and made epic failures of the remaining three, (and no, I shall not tell you what they were!)

But between you, me, and the little thing they call t'interweb: 2009 was nothing short of an utterly rampageous year for me.

People seem to like to describe the lives of young entrepreneurs and their nascent businesses as if we were on a roller-coaster, and I get that, really I do! The highs, the lows, the thrills and anxieties undeniably come to permeate every aspect of your life. Yet last year, if proof was even required, served to deftly illustrate quite how over simplified this analogy is. There's not only a roller coaster in the entrepreneurial fairground, there’s the spiraling helter-skelter, a haunted house, a shooting gallery (always rigged) and a candy stand where we can prove, yet again, that entrepreneurs have 'eyes bigger than our stomachs'.. and don't even get me started on the caged-in cycle of the carousel, or the dodge ‘ems with at least one driver who thinks he’s in a bumper-car.. It's all at once exhausting and dazzling.

Through 2009 I struggled at times between being so goal orientated I became inflexible and unresponsive, and so open minded and eager to learn that I was led astray by every bandwagon and exciting new idea. A lot is made of the 'art' to keeping resolutions, very little do we consider the art of allowing ourselves not to achieve our set goals if the goals are no longer appropriate. There are so many things from 2009 I might respond to differently should they recur in 2010, certainly too many to list and keep on my wall. So I have only one resolution for 2010:
'Carry no regrets, only lessons'.

And in a series beginning next week I will blog 'The 12 entrepreneurial lessons I learnt from 2009'.

5 comments:

Amanda said...

...and, yes, for those of you wondering that is tantamount to writing a list of 12 daft things I did which I'm attempting not to regret and, yes, it was very hard to pick only 12 ;-)

benrmatthews said...

Looking forward to reading those daft things!

info said...

Were your resolutions last year business related, life related or both?

Amanda said...

benrmatthews:
I'll be as candid as I dare! ;-)

info:
My resolutions for 2009 were a combination of tangible business and personal aspirations. Notably, those I achieved most easily were out-and-out work related, the toughest were the personal goals!

info said...

Call me weird but I'm trying to think of my business life and personal life as one big intertwined mess...funnily enough it's got a lot easier to set and achieve goals since I stopped treating them differently.

My only problem is I'm always onto the next target before I have time to even start to enjoy the last...

@moveaheaddesign