I asked my boys what’s in store for 2017 and my charming eight year old son, Jax, said simply: it’s going to be epic mum. I don’t know where he gets his words from, but I reckon he could be onto something. While we can’t afford to stand idly by as the world teeters on the brink of who-knows-what, I am grateful we all got a massive kick in the ass in 2016, because now is the time to fight for the world we want together. I’m ready for battle – you?
So today, on my 47th birthday (shit, that sounds so old!!!), which co-incides with a new chapter for all of us, I am looking forward to an amazing year. And that amazing stuff always starts at home, with my loves.
My youngest, Jax, is going into big boy grade three this year and while I will continue to be poopy mumma, and told regularly that I’m the worst mum eva, that I ruin everything, and you know, continue to receive the incredible love that spews out of the sweet mouths of babes, I reckon this is going to be an epic year for the Jaxster. He’s finally getting focused.
Then there is Lex, who is going into full time therapy this year to deal with the auditory processing issues that have evolved since his tonsils and adenoids were removed in 2010. I know this is it. This is the final thing we need to do to get Lex caught up and on track for the best life ever. He’s a remarkable dude our Lexy, but the journey has been a grinding one for all of us, and if there’s one lesson I want to share with any parent dealing with issues that no one seems to be able to put a finger on, it is this: believe in yourself and leave no stone unturned.
And my darling Steve. Travelling so much last year and expecting more in 2017. But he’s remarkable at what he does and has enjoyed great success in 2016 – I’m so proud of him and don’t tell him that enough. I’m also incredibly thankful because his success has given me the space and freedom to pursue my dreams. How can you thank someone enough for that? I will definitely repay him with success, so he too can have a period of freedom to do whatever he wants to do – if that’s playing golf every day and being the main parent, awesome. He’s a great man Steve. Understated in his talents, generous and excessive to a fault, I love this man of mine and thank my lucky stars every day we found each other.
Then looking ahead to my year. I need to slow things down. It got too chaotic and too crazy last year, mainly because I’m really shit at saying no to people. So I need to learn to say no, and I also must learn how to manage all of the different communication channels coming at me. I’ve got about 12 different social messaging inboxes (plus the normal ones like email, sms, etc..) and they’re all like Twitter feeds in their ferocity.
An important tip for 2017: if you really want to get in touch with me 1. Nag me and 2. Communicate across multiple channels. Believe me, I like being nagged by people I care about, because it really is amazing how quickly messages disappear into the bowels of inboxes these days, especially when you have a whole lot of spam in the mix too. My word, the spam!
But it’s going to be an amazing year. I’ve picked up incredible opportunities as The Digital Conversationalist, and 2017 is all about refining my offering and continuing to focus on the most important things – working with great people and doing work I love. I’m ready. It’s going to be fast and furious, but it’s going to be awesome.
I must say, if you want an example of persistence paying off, I hope I can be that example for you. Never ever give up, no matter how long it takes. I really do encourage everyone to identify that dream you have for yourself and then relentlessly pursue it, no matter the barriers that come your way. I have constantly faced barriers, but I ignored them, jumped them, side-stepped them, etc.. and kept my eyes on the goal, even when I was the only one who believed in where I was going. Persistence and stubbornness are positive qualities sometimes… It works, it really does.
Moving on, another thing I expect in 2017 is for firsts to be in abundance again. I did a bunch of firsts last year – things that made me squirm with embarrassment and general uncomfortable-ness, but you don’t make progress doing the same things right? My first videos, my first webinar, and so much more. Definitely a lot of firsts.
And firsts will continue and I’ll continue to squirm, but I’m going to do them anyway. I have a goal to achieve (to make the world a better place), so being brave enough to step into the unknown is a critical part of succeeding. I hope you realize I don’t do anything from an arrogant point of view. I never think I’m right. I know I have much to learn. I’m just trying to do my bit to make the world around me a better place. That’s all that motivates me to do what I do. I hope that comes across.
Travel is big on the list this year too. I will get to the US in 2017, as there are so many pals to catch up with – too many I haven’t seen since I left Boston and NYC in 2001! That needs to change and we need to compare wrinkles, because it’s been long enough for us to get a few of those. Europe too – I have a long overdue date in Marrakech I need to rectify.
I also plan to start my quarterly women’s stories series this year, something I really really want to do. I want to visit the incredible institutions around the world who rescue young women (and men) from sexual slavery and give them an opportunity at life again. My goal is to meet them, speak to them and share their stories, to help raise awareness of this horrible, shitty reality that exists in our world. As we all know, the best way to raise awareness is through personal stories so others can relate. We don’t respond to issues en-masse – we can’t personalise it. So that’s a huge goal I’ve had for a long time now and I want to get it into action in 2017. You’re welcome to join me.
There’s already so much in there, which means 2017 is going to be another crazy, busy year. It’s hard to juggle everything with family commitments, professional commitments and the things I want to achieve personally as well, but I’m not good at going slow, so I may as well fill this life up right? I know I make people’s heads spin with the busy-ness of my life, but that’s what I need to do. It’s who I am.
So it’s going to be a great year and I will continue to believe that I, and each of us, have the power to make a difference and change this world for the better. The call has come through loud and clear for us not be apathetic. I hope you’ve heard it and will join me in whatever way feels right for you, so our kids can have an amazing future and planet to look forward to. That’s what it’s all about – them.
What’s going to happen for you in 2017? What’s the big stuff you’ve got planned? Oh go on, tell me.
Big love to everyone for 2017 and, as always, yours, without the bollocks
PS: if you’re a planner or you need to save money, January 2020 is the BIG birthday and I’m planning on doing it in Sri Lanka. Put it in the diary and come help me celebrate. I am not a planner, but I think this is one worth getting organized for.
A man jumping photo courtesy of Shutterstock
If you want to stay in touch, I’m active in lots of places, including Twitter here, Google+ here, Instagram here, and Facebook too. I share lots of stuff about the things I care about, not just my own view. I’d also love it if you shared my blog, especially if you think anyone you know will be interested or entertained. That’s what it’s all about today – giving to and supporting each other xxxxx