I’m not one for new years resolutions but I often reflect about this time of year on how i can improve.
At the end of 2014 I remember posting on facebook the following:
i’m often guilty of yearning for my better future, so much that I forget to live in the now, I stop living and spending quality time with the people I love. This is something that I must sort out before I miss my two daughters childhood
This was a realisation to me, and because I practice what I preach, putting it out there on social media held me accountable for my actions in 2015.
Was i going to do something about it, or simply moan and carry on?
Well, those that know me well, will know I very rarely moan about anything I can’t change. So I looked at what needed to be done, in order to give me more time with my family and support my beautiful wife who I had pretty much abandoned for the last five years!
I hadn’t intentionally not offered support to my wife of course, I was just so blinkered in trying to make my business work that I couldn’t see what was happening at home. This is very common with young families, the extra financial pressure, especially if you have a new business!
Now when I say new, it wasn’t new, it was 6 years old, but because of several circumstances it was like starting again when we moved site in 2010, and when I suffered a bulging disc in 2012 it kind of stopped me in my tracks.
Now at the time and for another 2 years until I got an operation, I was in pain 100% of the time whilst awake, literally the only respite I had was when I was asleep for those few hours in the evening. I put on a brave face and continued to give my everything to my business, but it meant I had nothing left to give when I was at home. It’s only now when I am free of pain that I can reflect back and understand that someone like me, who is so driven, needed to hit a wall like this so I could asses what was really important in my life.
My wife and kids mean absolutely everything to me and in 2014 I knew if I didn’t make a change I would lose them. So in 2015 I mad the decision to sell my business. It wasn’t because I necessarily disliked my business but it was preventing me from living.
14 hour days 6, days a week, only seeing my two gorgeous girls on Sundays, where I was physically present but by no means emotionally! well, it was just all so very wrong.
Now this was easily the most difficult decision of my life so far, and I know people go through a lot worse in their lifetime, but my business and the clients I served, supported, and guided through their personal struggles was my life. I had built the business from nothing over 11 years to a revolutionary new training facility. Never wanting to let anyone down, I was filled with guilt everyday for all those amazing clients I would no longer be able to help, but a year on that decision has been the greatest thing I could have done. No matter how much you do for people, they will move on, hopefully never forgetting but they move on to the next chapter, and I have now done the same.
This year I have been able to see my family every single day. I have been able to take my kids to school and pick them up which to some is a chore, but this year I feel blessed just to have the opportunity. I have been able to support my wife and give her the space and freedom to think about her own working life and what she wants to achieve in life. I have been given the opportunity to breathe and value everything that is important and it feels like I’m actually living again.
Now you might be reading this and thinking so what, you’ve sold your business and can now do what most people do every single day. Be a supportive husband and father, big deal! But it is a big deal, you see, so many of us exist, we don’t really live. I mean, how many of you reading this do the same thing over and over, every day like groundhog day? How many of you live for the weekend and hate Mondays?
Well if you do, maybe it’s time for your own reflections!
Too many of us live to work, earn money to buy possessions, and don’t really appreciate life.
I was out with a group of friends the other day, and after a few drinks, we were discussing where we see ourselves in 5 years. Most people aspire to have better cars, houses, more money etc and i used to be the same, thinking I would only be considered successful if I had a fancy car, and a big house!
The thing is, having possessions doesn’t make you a rich man. (read that again)
A rich man has his health, happiness and enjoys life to the full. He lives in the present, and doesn’t hold on to the past.
This year forget about resolutions and instead work on reflections and become the best version of you in 2017.
Merry Christmas & A Very Happy New Year
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