Looking Back To Look Forward in 2019

d&i strategies self care smart and flexible working Dec 20, 2018

As the festive season is soon upon us, I am “walking the talk”. How, you may ask? Well, I am doing what we encourage others to do all the time - I am taking a moment to press “pause”.

When I think about the conversations over this festive, sociable period, family, friends and colleagues often ask how the year has been and they are curious to know what your New Year’s Resolutions are for 2019.

Some people reflect on their year with great energy and joy; others will shy away from answering or not want to give it much thought, as sometimes it reminds us of the low points. Some will talk about their 2019 goals with fervor and passion, whilst others say “I do not believe in making resolutions”.

So, where do you start, when thinking about these big questions? For me, I need to break it down and reflect over several days. My approach is to use ‘smaller questions’.

  • What lessons did I learn in 2018?
  • What am I proud of in 2018?
  • What am I grateful for?
  • What did I learn about myself?
  • Where and how do I limit myself & what is the benefit of stopping?
  • What practices & materials do I need to put in place to help me remember these learnings?
  • What did I let go of / overcome?
  • What do I want to take into 2019?
  • What am I celebrating at the end of 2019?

I’ve started my thinking and I am only a few days in, so I will share some of my thoughts so far.

Some of the lessons I have learnt include ‘it’s good to ask for help’. At Thriving Talent & Thriving Parents, we have a goal to empower 1 million parents by end of 2020. When you have a challenge as big as this, you need to ask for help! I am now much better at saying to organisations and networks, “please help us make this change”. Also, I learnt that it takes courage to take a leap of faith and put everything into a cause which is still in its infancy - as one close friend said in the summer this year when talking about the work of Thriving Talent..”you came early to the party but the party is starting…” She of course was right!

What am I grateful for? Many things and this is an easier question to answer as I try to think about this daily. So, the list begins: I am grateful for

  • having a family who is supportive, inspiring, exhausting and energising - about to be extended by finally saying yes to a dog in 2019
  • having a professional purpose which drives me, stretches me and has the potential to have a bigger impact with the work we do at Thriving Talent in Switzerland
  • friends who still make me laugh out loud
  • a business partner (co-founder Natalie Wilkins) who is creative, energetic and truly caring
  • our team at Thriving Talent who are equally dedicated and passionate about our cause, and
  • Finally for living in Switzerland, with its stunning scenery and the outdoor playground it provides.

The reason it’s important to look back on a year is because it helps you become clear on what you want to continue doing, what you want to stop doing and what you want to start doing! Sounds like your own personal feedback process!

So when I reflect on 2018, how does that help me shape 2019? What am I celebrating at the end of 2019? In brief:

  • More laughs, more fun, more special memories with family and friends.
  • Completing the Tour du Lac for the 1st time.
  • Getting more organisations on board to enable “caring and career”, through adapting more inclusive leadership and supporting individuals through the joyful yet often challenging transition to parenthood.

So, what about you? What do you become aware of when you press pause?

Wishing you all a wonderful festive season and break.

Best wishes, Deborah Croft

Co-founder Thriving Talent & Thriving Parents

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