Ah, the blessed, dreaded year-in-review. Is it a thrill for you to look back at the last twelve months and amaze at how much happened? All the celebrities who died and politicians who fell from grace. To see how your investments paid off and whether you stuck to that resolution of exercising more? And how about your annual review at work? Looking forward to that like a root canal? Or you’re energized, ready to wipe the slate clean and start over with some new goals?
To review or not to review?
If you aren’t required to do a year-end review, why would you? Especially if the year was challenging, like 2017 was for so many of us. Our family had to move house and pay for expensive repairs for both cars, so for us it was a financially painful year. And who wants to be reminded of all the items you didn’t cross off the to-do list and the struggles? Why not just let it go and move on? I admit, as my own boss, it’s tempting to just sweep 2017 under the rug…nobody will know (until we have to move house again!).
How low can you go?
But growth-oriented people will tell you that every regret holds a valuable lesson. Aren’t those people annoying? Now you’ve got the image of those golden nugget lessons hiding in a pile of dust under the rug, niggling at you. Because they’re right. You know they are. And if you face your failures, groan and shed a tear, then you can free yourself from guilty feelings.
You also begin to see what you might do differently, if similar troubles were to crop up again. How about putting more into the emergency fund each month, or getting a gym buddy to hold you accountable? If your plan to live out your French dream stalled out in 2017, what could you do to get it back on track?
You da best!
And reviewing your past year can also make you feel wonderful. Now’s your chance to celebrate all that went well, your successes. When I was listing my negatives and positives, the first part was kind of depressing. And then I realized that the list of wins was more than twice as long as the fails! No, we didn’t manage to host our first seminar last year, but we did revamp the entire website AND launched our ebooks on Healthcare in France.
I read that high-achievers find reviews frustrating, because they always wanted to do more. Can you relate to that? But you must take time to be proud of all that you did achieve. Even if you still can’t understand the French news, you did learn 52 new idioms this year. Pat yourself on the back. Do a self-high-five. You need that confidence to keep shooting for the stars.
Where to go from here?
Which brings us to the final part of the year-end review. What do you want next year to look like? This can be the hardest part for some people. If you have trouble coming up with meaningful goals, try focusing on your core values, the ones that move your soul. Take some grand goals and break them down into achievable milestones you can track. You won’t be able to control everything, like cars breaking down and whimsical French civil servants. But if you set your bearing to the best version of yourself, you have a great chance of reaching your destination.
Wherever you are along the road of making your French dream life a reality, Renestance is here to help you.
- You already live in France but are feeling bogged down for whatever reason, and your life is not matching your dream. We can help you out of the quagmire.
- You’ve got a firm plan to move over, but you’ve got a long to-do list and aren’t sure what’s missing or what comes next. We can coach you through the process and make sure you hit the ground running.
- You’re trying to determine the best spot to build your French nest. We can work up a regional reconnaissance trip with you to narrow down the choices.
We at Renestance send you our best wishes for the New Year. Let’s make 2018 the year your French dream life happens!
Dennelle is the President of Renestance and a bilingual American who’s lived in France since 2000. She loves so many things about France, its language, culture, geography, quality of life... that she started a business to help others realize their dreams of living in this incredible place.
All articles by: Dennelle Taylor Nizoux