Three lessons learned from a busy month

Whew, April. You were a month. Between some big activities at work and some important happenings for family, there was a lot going on.

Looking back, I’m proud of how everything turned out.

As I’m completing my monthly reflection in my much-loved Passion Planner, one of the questions is “What were the three biggest lessons you learned in the past month?” These lessons aren’t new or earth shattering. But they helped me to get through a busy time, and articulating them is a good reminder of how I can be most successful.

Do what needs to be done

I love seeing a problem, making a decision, solving it and moving on. For the past six months, I’ve been part of planning an important retirement celebration. Event night arrived a few weeks ago. With a great team in place and the best laid plans, everything ran fairly smoothly. But there were still a few unforeseen moments. From writing last minute speaking notes on my phone and finding someone to announce them over the PA to walking the catwalk above the audience to direct the photographer to the best shot, these little moments make me feel like I’m contributing to the success of our event.

Talk it out

April saw three birthdays, a christening, an anniversary and Easter with all of its family obligations. When it came to my parents’ anniversary near the end of the month, my Mom and I had a frank conversation about how much of a fuss she wanted and how much I felt like doing. We ended up with a simple dinner for her, my Dad, my husband and me. My siblings celebrated with her and my Dad in their own ways. I was glad that my Mom and I talked it out and were honest with each other about what we wanted, rather than assuming we knew. The result was a nice celebration that worked for both of us.

Take some me time

Easter is my favourite holiday, in part because it’s one of the only occasions where growing up we had a four-day weekend. I’ve returned to that tradition in recent years, booking an extra day of holiday on Easter Monday. This year, that day–two days after standing as godmother at my nephew’s christening and two days before the big retirement event–was a very welcome break in the middle of a very busy time. Sometimes, it’s hard to break away. But a mental health break–even just a chapter of a book, a hike in the woods or, if I can manage it, a whole day off–invariably makes me more energized to get back to work.

How do you stay motivated? What lessons have you learned that help you be successful? How do you reflect on what you’ve accomplished?

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