As one year ends and we make way for the next, now is the perfect time to reflect on our careers and our personal lives.
Regardless of what kind of year you had, there were undoubtedly many triumphs as well as setbacks. If you are currently in practice, particularly if your firm is thriving, you have many reasons to be thankful.
I’ll name a few. At work, you get to practice the skills you eagerly sought as a young adult and help people on a daily basis. You get to arrange your office in the way you choose. You work with people who share, presumably, your vision in terms of advancing the firm. Perhaps you are able to take off numerous weekends, not to mention your ability to go on extended vacations.
Regardless of your situation, it behooves each of us to stop and reflect on how lucky we are. Even if you are currently facing difficult challenges, on balance, most of the time, each of us experiences a life that intermittently contains excitement, disappointments, wonders and moments of pure joy.
Here are four reasons it makes sense to be reflective and thankful as the year ends:
1) If you have your health, it has been said, you have everything. While that might not be exactly so, health is still one of the individual treasures of our existence on earth. Everyone who deems themselves to be healthy, myself included, should acknowledge this truly great gift on a continual basis.
2) Consider your family, friends, peers, coworkers and other professional associates. Within that broad swath of humanity, clearly there are people whom you care about deeply. There are people who make a difference in your life. There are good friends and peers who add great value on a regular basis. For this, we can be thankful.
3) Whether you live in the U.S. or abroad, presumably, you can be thankful for the many benefits of living in your respective country, where you are allowed to practice the profession of your choice, make a decent income, are a respected member of the community and look forward to more years of being held in esteem by those around you.
4) In anticipation of the next few months and all the adventures and triumphs that are forthcoming, who would not be thankful? Right now represents a time of opportunity. Consider what you would like to change or accomplish in the new year.
We have the chance to act in new ways – to make new explorations, take on new challenges, assume new types of behaviors and, indeed, even reinvent ourselves. For that capability alone, I think we can all agree on the importance of being reflective and thankful.