I love this time of year. Especially being a Christmas baby (23rd December, fyi!), it’s a great opportunity to look back at the year that’s gone and tie it up in a big bow, and then create a vision for the year ahead. I’d like to share my process with you today, in case you want to take some time out from the festivities to do some life-designing.

To review the year that’s gone, I grab my year’s worth of journals and head to the coffee shop for a few hours to read back through my musings and extract a summary of what I’ve learned – or all too often, re-learned – and also to note any patterns that emerge. It’s a fabulous way to get perspective on my life, to celebrate the successes, and identify the things that could have gone better.

Then I let that review marinate in my mind for a few days. Around New Year I’ll find time for a mini-retreat to envision the year ahead. This isn’t about the HOW, it’s about the WHAT – a blue sky dream of where I’d like to be by the end of 2016.

Once that vision feels good, I’ll pull out my trusty Excel spreadsheets and nail that vision down into the habits that will take me towards my goals. We can’t always control the outcome, but we can control the process, and ensure that the way we live our days is taking us towards the life that we want.

Simple as that. And as powerful. Never underestimate the power of a clear vision of the future.

Wishing you a wonderfully happy festive season, and I’ll see you in 2016!


P.S. To make you really grateful for your creature comforts this Christmas, check out the intrepid competitors in this year’s Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge, rowing 3,000 miles across the Atlantic. It’s 10 years since I was out there, enjoying (?) a solitary Christmas, and I’m very happy to be ashore this time around!




  • Thank you for reiterating ideas that I am really just learning this year. Goals are good to have, but are largely useless without a clear strategy for getting there.

    Hope you have a great Birthday and Christmas, Roz!

    • Thanks, James! Yes, that’s been a big (re)learning for me. It’s all about taking the oarstrokes every day – the mileage achieved is subject to too many external influences to be rewarding. I had to just keep doing the work and trust that it would all pay off. But progress is not always linear!

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