What I have learnt from 2012.
Happy New Year to my dear friends both old and new,
2012 has come and gone, and with it came ups and downs and few side-way turns - but what is a year, without steering left or right from what could possibly be a boring straight road ahead?
I started 2012, in the worse possible fashion. I was in another country, at a celebration that was marred by a relationship that was not meant to be and ensured that there was no celebrating the new year coming in. For someone who is somewhat superstitious about bringing in a new year, that was a less than perfect situation. Nevertheless, it gave me an experience in life and a new appreciation for the fact that "everyone has their own shit to deal with" - and sometimes you just have to let people learn from their own mistakes and continue on their own journey without trying to advertly change them.
It's a great realisation to come to when you can look back at the year, and see how much you have grown as a person and how much more understanding, accomodating and less selfish you can become. I have watched others live their lives and occasionally fall down, and its refreshing to see it from a different perspective. Positivity has been key and has been an underlying theme to everything that has gone on throughout the year. Sure, there have been moments and sometimes days, where it was hard to be positive, but this theme kept creeping back and let me assure you, it worked wonders.
While the start was not the best, it was a year that I became a better employer and business person. Business, as you know, is important to me. Every year, if you spend time taking in feedback and re-educating yourself, you will always improve and become a better version of yourself. I am sure my employees and friends have seen the journey more closely and can see a positive change that will take our company to a whole new level. It's not often a business person shares such insights, because everyone is out there trying to spruik how great they are at business or how much success they have achieved. I just tell it how it is and hope that some aspects of my life, relates back to the people I share it with.
I always feel that by sharing my inner most thoughts on a business blog, people that can relate to the fact that you don't have to be "on" 24/7 nor do you have to pretend to be "fine" with everything. You can show that you have feelings, that sometimes you get hurt by someone else's actions or that you make mistakes and sometimes you just take things the wrong way. I never wanted this blog to not tell the truth or how it really is. On that note, this blog has been a remarkable achievement and something that I am proud of for so many reasons. The hundreds of emails I receive weekly regarding this blog is something that I treasure dearly.
In 2012, I travelled and met some of the most interesting people imaginable. I have taken risks, climbed mountains, and hopped on flights just because there was a good party or an opportunity too good to miss. I have challenged my own sanctum by not doing things that were expected - over and over again. I have been continually grateful for the people around me and for the experiences I have had and that I know I will continue to have.
I sat on a plane only months ago, next to a gentleman who after 3 hours, decided to start a conversation. I don't really talk to people on planes, but on this particular occasion, it seemed right. We have since become firm friends and met up a few times even though we live in opposite ends of the world. His commentary on life and business is completely mesmerizing and his notes with words of wisdom and unabated kindness, are something I will treasure long after we lose contact.
I love to write, and often write notes to people and have been continually pleasantly surprised by others doing the same. In the past week, I have received more than a dozen letters, emails, and text messages with heartfelt notes from people that have been in my life or that are in my life, giving me insight into what I actually mean to them or an appreciation for a moment in time. To those people, thank you. Those messages mean more to me than you can ever imagine.
Everyone comes into your life for a reason, a season and a lifetime. We always hope for a lifetime, but just because they don't, doesn't mean that it doesn't have just as much meaning.
I feel privileged to live the life I do, to have what I have and to be able to share my thoughts and opinions with people like yourselves. I can't imagine my life any way other than how it is, but I wouldn't care if it all changed. We are all on a journey and life isn't about what possessions you have, or how many friends you have on facebook. It's about being free to live your own life and being able to experience things that make you happy, sometimes sad or indifferent.
My niece said to me today "everyone's perception of the meaning of life is different and no-one can tell you that one way is right or wrong". Wise words Ashleigh.
For me, this new year is different. It's about new beginnings and an openness to business and life. My theme for 2013 is "kindness and understanding" and with that, I wish you all a very happy new year. May this year, be the best one ever.