As Christmas approaches and I find my inbox full of festive greetings (most of then happily received) I find myself looking back on life in 2014.It’s something I don’t do often enough (I’m get much more excited about what’s going to happen next than what’s happened in the past) however I reckon there’s a huge advantage in looking back every now and again even if it’s just to understand what you’ve learned from the challenges you’ve faced, what went well and just to reminisce about the moments which make you smile the most…
For me 2014 can be encapsulated in one word….Growth
I’ve seen Charlotte and Sophie grow in their own unique ways…
Sophie from a toddler into a assertive,sweet and funny little girl.
Whilst having a two year old is often a pretty challenging place to be (although to be fair more for Cassie than it is for me) the bits I most vividly remember is when she’s surprised me with a new skill, or we’ve been silly together, or she’s made me laugh until I’m in tears.
Particular highlights include our games of Ready, Steady, Banana, My recent realisation that she’s pretty good at rock, paper, scissors (although she did try to insert “Cheese” as a selection at one point) and the way she reacts when being caught doing something we’re not too keen on…“Sophie, stop squeezing the dog!” “But Daddy….I wouldn’t!” “Wouldn’t! But Sophie you did!” “Sorry Daddy!”
and I’m seeing…
Charlotte developing her own interests, her own style and a unique personality with a fantastic sense of humour
Charlotte is changing to. It’s interesting, the change isn’t as pronounced and obvious as Sophie’s (10 to 11 doesn’t seem as obvious a change as 2 to 3) but one way she’s grown is how she’s start to develop her own interests.
From Pokemon (and Digimon and, well actually any Manga cartoon involving battling monsters) to Minecraft to our new canine addition this year she continues to develop her own interests, fascinations and obsessions.
She’s also funnier, smarter and as confident as ever and this seems to grow day by day.
However we’ve also had challenges (like the ‘jujitsu competition’) and at times have been frightened beyond belief (like Charlotte had to visit to the hospital) but all in all it’s been an incredible year.
However what’s strange is that whilst it’s natural to look back and see how your children have developed and grown it seems that many of us don’t look at our own lives and see how we’ve ‘grown’.
Not in a schmaltzy X factor ‘journey’ way, or physically (although the Christmas chocolates and mince pies are helping my waistline grow!) but as people.
This year I’ve read roughly a book a week. Surrounded myself with great people who each have their own lessons to teach and taken action to continue to build my business.
Also, I’ve won a bunch of awards, had the opportunity to flex my public speaking muscle a bunch (sometimes remotely!) and collaborated to develop a product which, so far and it only launched a few weeks ago, is being used by hundreds of people across the UK.
Also I’ve been proud to work with a fantastic member of our business team. Kelly came on board over a year ago as an apprentice and has been on her own journey of growth (in skills, knowledge and confidence) within our firm which culminated in her being a finalist in the apprentice of the year awards.
As always Cassie, my wife has been a lynchpin in everything I do, has been fantastic.
It’s not always easy running a family and business together and there’s times we don’t exactly see eye to eye. However our ambitions for our lives and our family remains the same and we’re always working together to improve both.
I don’t say this enough but I’m massively lucky to have Cassie.
So when I look back at the year and the growth we’ve all achieved I feel massively lucky.
Lucky to have a loving family, friends and colleagues.
Lucky to have great opportunities both commercially and personally.
Lucky to get to speak to some fantastic people who enrich my life every day.
So if we’ve met and just spoken for a while….thank you.
If we’ve just spoken online and haven’t yet met….thank you.
If you read my blogs…..thank you.
I’ve got some big plans for 2015 (including publishing my first book) but for now I’m feeling massively lucky and massively grateful.
I hope you’re feeling the same way and make sure you have a fantastic Christmas and new year!
See you in 2015!