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Sunday
May112014

Have You Seen This Movie Before?

At the start of this year, I’m sure many of you made your annual resolutions to do better in a range of interests, activities and responsibilities.

How did you do?

You are closing in on the second half of the year and it might be a good time to stop, take stock and review your progress against those targets and objectives that you set yourself.  For some of you, in some of your objectives, you might be able to say that you did, indeed, make significant and observable strides towards your goal, or goals.  But for others, you might have to say that you have “seen this movie before.”

You know the feeling . . .  you settle down to a night of entertainment, TV guide in hand and you pick a movie.  The title seems vaguely familiar but you are not quite sure.  The program information seems interesting, entertaining, informative, amusing, thrilling, intriguing, etc. – you pick your own adjective to suit your mood – and so you begin.

Some way into the program, you realise that you have seen this all before.  It all comes back to you and you remember that you enjoyed it the first time around and so “why not again?”  You could get up and change channels or leave the theatre, but it’s easier just to sit back and get comfortable.  Why bother?  It will be OK, I’m in comfortable surroundings, there’s nothing better to do.  She’ll be right.

But at the end of the two hours, you might find yourself feeling somehow empty, unfulfilled.  You could recite some of the lines, you welcomed the characters like old friends, you knew how the story would unfold, and you watched as it all happened again.

Some will relish the feeling of comfort – no surprises, no sudden twists that stretch the mind, and a conclusion that leaves you in familiar surroundings.  But let’s be honest.  Are you ever going to get that two hours back?  Has the experience added anything to your life or knowledge base?  Have you moved forward in any way?  Where are you now in relation to where you started?

Now let’s look back over the last six months.  Have you seen this movie before?  Are you further along than you were in January?  Are you a passive member of the audience?  Are all the characters the same?  And does the story line unfold in that familiar way?

Or, do you feel refreshed.  Your movie was a brand new experience.  You are in the Director's chair.  You met new people, worked with new teams on exciting and challenging projects, you took steps forward in the way you managed and led those who you serve.  You can recall the way the plot developed, how you were confronted with new story lines, and how you dealt with each one.

Take some time to reflect on progress against your goals.  Have they slipped away and you are ensconced in “same old, same old”, or are you moving into new territory and challenging yourself in new situations?  Are you repeating those old habits that you were trying to let go, or have you taken on a more productive approach to your work, your business, your career, your life?  Are you doing new things, or at least doing the same things differently?  Have you retired from the neck up, or are you continuing to develop new and challenging interests?

Time, like the arrow spent, can never be recalled

Now, let’s see.  You have just over six months.  What are you going to say come December 31st

“I’ve seen this movie before and no matter how many times I see it again, it will always end the same way.  Nothing new to report, I’m marking time, I’m about where I started, and I’ve wasted my time.”

Or?

“That was a great show, and I’m looking forward to what comes next.  I grew my field of merit, got my money’s worth, and I can’t wait for the next episode.  By this time next year, I’m going to be a lot further along my growth path, enjoying new doors opening, exploring new opportunities and living my life.”

It’s all down to you and your intentions.  You choose.

All the best

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