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What If Next Year Was Your Last Year?

Published December 28, 2017

Here we are at the end of another year, and getting ready to ring in the new year. It seems that everyone is thinking about what the new year will bring and the resolutions that they are going to make that will make it the best year ever. I’ve done that so many times and there is something noble about a New Year resolution. It’s a fresh start, a clean slate, and you have a chance to do things differently than you did before to hopefully get better results in every area of your life.

But what if 2018 was your last year? What if you knew that this was your last January? February? March? What if you knew that on December 31st of 2018 that was it? Thinking about our mortality isn’t something that many of us do, and let’s be honest…it’s not a lot of fun. But as time rolls on it is only natural to realize that there are more years behind us than there are in front of us. But I think the mindset of looking at life as a gift and a limited time only event is healthy for everyone at any stage of life.

What if you knew that 2018 was going to be your last year to make an impact in the lives of the people around you? What if you knew it was going to be the last time you could invest in your family? What if you knew it was going to be the last time you could share your story?

How would this impact your decisions?
How would this affect the way you treat the people around you?
How would the knowledge that this was your last year change the conversations you have?
How would you be more intentional in how you share your art with the world?
Would you be less disappointed?
Would you be less focused on the wrong things and more focused on the things that really matter?

So let’s pretend for a moment that 2018 is your last year. Here are 10 questions to ask yourself to make the most of the time you have left:

  1. What can I do to invest more intentionally in the lives that have been entrusted to me, personally and professionally?
  2. What can I do to make more of an impact in the world beyond the work I do everyday?
  3. How can I minimize the distractions in my life to keep what is most important in front of me as much as possible?
  4. How can I use less words and communicate more clearly with those around me?
  5. How will I be more intentional with my time? My resources? My relationships?
  6. How can I focus more on others and less on myself?
  7. How can I have better and more meaningful conversations with the people in my life?
  8. How can I help develop the next generation of leaders to be great developers of the next generation of leaders?
  9. How can I talk less and listen more?
  10. How can I share my story to inspire the people in my sphere of influence, and beyond?

This life we’ve all been given is such a gift. The life I’ve been given is such a gift, and I realize that I can do better. I can be better. I can be more intentional. I can make more of an impact. So, this year, I have no New Year resolutions. I have a new approach to living my life. I am going to live 2018 like it’s my last year and I am going to do my best to make a positive impact with every action I take, and to make every conversation more meaningful, as I am more intentional with the gift of time that I have been given.

May 2018 be the best year for all of us for all the right reasons.

Happy New Year.