Can you believe that today is the last day of 2018? In some ways it feel like a year passes so slowly, but yet so quickly. So much can change and happen in a year’s time. Do you take time to reflect back?
One of the things I notice with myself, and you may notice too, is that we push, push, push to achieve and accomplish, but rarely take time to fully feel, appreciate and CELEBRATE our accomplishments. Are you guilty of this too?
As I was thinking about my year of 2018, it is easy for me to think negatively about it based on some of my experiences in the 2nd half of the year. However, when I take the time to look back through my year as a whole ... yes there have been major struggles ... but there were many good things too! I’ve seen others keep journals where they write down highlights from each month, but for me the easiest way for me to do this “look back” is to scroll through the photos on my phone or even through my posts on my social media accounts. It is a great reminder of fun memories, and can help to put much in perspective.
Here is a snapshot of my 2018 ...
-I read 31 (!!!) books ... probably my most ever in a year since BK (before kids).
-Earlier in the year I reached a milestone “Lifetime Achievement” award with my current brokerage, one of only 2 people at the time to ever do so, with $50M in sales in my time (3 years) with them. Huge! Especially considering that when I joined this brokerage I was coming back to the business after a 2 ½ year “hiatus”.
-This year I served as the leader of the Lovettsville Business Network, presenting on business topics to a group of local business owners each month.
-My youngest son settled into the proper medication/dosage to treat his ADHD, which has been transformative for him both in terms of academically, but also in becoming “more” of himself. It has been amazing to witness.
-We purchased our first investment property this year ... a huge family goal. The best part though is that the 2 families that we have rented to thus far have both been known to us, and this rental has filled a huge need in their families too ... a wonderful and unexpected benefit.
-I personally helped 50 families this year with their real estate needs ... and the very best part of that was helping my brother and sister-in-law to sell their home and buy a home closer to our families. This is transformative for our overall family as a whole as we are now able to share hosting duties for family events, as well as just being closer to all of us day to day.
-My middle son played his last ever Little League baseball game as he “aged out” this year. It was a memorable season with my husband managing his last team. He also got braces later this year, was selected to an All Star baseball team, and started playing Babe Ruth baseball in the fall on his older brother’s team, which was a lot of fun.
-Our family as a whole discovered and fell in love with a new beach (Topsail Island, NC). We ventured past our usual VA/DE beaches hoping to find something new that could also double as a future retirement location. Two weeks on the island and we were sold! We just booked our trip for 2019.
-I was interviewed on multiple podcasts this year (Real Estate Deep Dive with Kara Macdonald and Pat Hiban’s Real Estate Rockstars, plus another than hasn’t aired yet), as well as presented locally on real estate topics to multiple groups.
-We paid off our credit card debt, which was a much bigger task than I would care to admit, after nearly 2 years of careful budgeting and planning.
-My oldest son started high school (!!!), and we ventured into the world of football games, Homecoming dances and girlfriends. It’s been a strange transition with my first “baby”, but a fun adventure nonetheless.
-My family went on many fun trips to some of our favorite places ... Lake Anna for Spring break, Great Wolf Lodge for one of their birthdays, the beach, Williamsburg at Christmas, and of course, our all time favorite, Disney World.
-I received a cancer diagnosis at the end of August, which then became a “maybe” diagnosis, which ultimately turned out to be a “borderline” tumor following my mastectomy in mid-October. The roller coaster was intense, and the emotional effects have been further reaching than I anticipated. On my surgery day I was remarkably calm ... truly a gift from God. The outpouring of love and support that I have felt through this experience has been nothing short of remarkable. Photo below taken the day after surgery after being released from the hospital carrying my “pain purse” (attached to my back with a catheter) and wearing my drains in an apron.
-The universe pushed me along (forcibly?) in making career adjustments with my business and here with Empowering Women In Real Estate, which will be bringing much growth and excitement in 2019.
-My team, along with my business partner Vicky Noufal, grew to 24 women strong this year and helped 414 families with their real estate needs ... an amazing accomplishment for us! We celebrated our 3rd year together, had our best retreat yet at Lake Gaston, NC, and we were all also featured in NOVA Real Producers December issue where I shared more about my personal story.
-Just 7 weeks post surgery I spoke at the Virginia Women’s Business Conference ... a longtime goal.
(My husband had many accomplishments and challenges of his own this year, but is more private, so not sharing here.)
I’ve always hated New Years Eve (even though I love New Year’s Day), can’t really explain why, but writing out some of these highlights and accomplishments helps to “lighten the load” so to speak and brings the excitement of the New Year a bit closer. My focus today will be on celebrating all that 2018 brought with it, good and bad, I hope you will do the same.
If you feel comfortable, share some of your accomplishments and highlights in the comments, or at least write them out for yourself. It is a great exercise, take time to celebrate where you’ve been and what you’ve done.
Wishing you all the most joyful, happy, healthy and prosperous New Year