Wednesday, September 2, 2009

RE: Summer

It’s a weird time of year. Although the heat continues, the summer recess that many people enjoyed often gives way to restlessness. It’s a period of transition as we wash the sand between our toes and slip back into our socks and shoes. Partly we want the relaxation of the season to continue a while longer, yet we also want things to get back to “normal”. Brisk air, turning leaves, kids back to school, new projects, preparation for the fourth quarter; the hours before Labor Day weekend create that tension.

It doesn’t matter if you're raring to roll up your sleeves and tackle something new or longing to keep your pant legs rolled up for another week of vacation, take the time to work on your “RE’s”; the first of course being, Reflection. Here are some others to consider during this time.

  • Reevaluate your goals, your progress, and your beliefs. Revisit each of them to make sure that you’re acting authentically and still believe the things you're telling people.
  • Renegotiate contracts that no longer work for you. People's expectations change over time. There’s nothing wrong with that. It exemplifies flexibility. So does collaborating to review the terms of long standing agreements you have in place.
  • Repair things that are broken. Spend time cleaning up the little annoyances of your life. Fix the squeaky door, an out of control junk drawer or leaky faucet. This applies to relationships too. Everyone has a friendship that’s been neglected, even with all the social media tools available. Forgive, forget or apologize and send them a thoughtful card.
  • Rejuvenate. You may have had a vacation that did the trick or maybe you feel like you need a vacation from you vacation. Get to the place that energizes you and just be there and enjoy it, even if it’s only in your mind for twenty minutes or so.
  • Renew. Decide on the things you want to keep in your life and physically or metaphorically dust them off. Put them in a different shelf so they stand out. Make them appear new so you can appreciate them again.
  • Reapply. Did you fail at something recently? Does that mean you should quit? Take a different approach or just show your grit and try again.
As we get anxious to start new projects, we tend to neglect the things we have for things we want. Often this involves a lot of daydreaming, wishing and yearning. Sometimes this causes the complete abandonment of one goal in pursuit of another, and then another and then another. Reexamine how you are living your life. You may determine you’re good to go and wouldn’t change a thing, or you may uncover a clue to greater success. Either way look, otherwise you will never know.