countdownto202028, 27, 26, 25, 24 …

Today marks exactly four weeks until 2020.

I was about to ask you to a) reflect on the year past, b) share your goals/hopes for the new year, when I realized…

It’s not just a new year coming up.

It’s a whole new DECADE.

And not only is it a whole new decade for us *all*, it’s a whole new decade for *me*, as I have a, er, “big” birthday coming up next month.


As I started to think back on the decade we’re about to say goodbye to, I had to stop and do a LOT of deep breathing.

First, because it’s exhausting.

It’s tough enough to star in your own personal retrospective going back one year.

Second, factor in an exponent of NINE, and it would be completely understandable if the only place I were to find you was taking refuge under the bar at “Cheers.”

Here’s my “look back” part.

On the professional side, this past decade has seen me:

  • Build my consulting business like crazy, to the point where various entities started initiating “acquisition” conversations (#truestory);
  • Work with clients like USA for UNCHR (Blue Key Campaign), Oxfam America, Traackr, the AP-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, and AcademyHealth;
  • Do cool “brand building” things like speak at a TEDx, become a legit keynote speaker (“have your people talk to my people” ;)), and win some cool awards;
  • Continue to teach at Johns Hopkins, one of the great joys of my life; and
  • Launch my own online program COMPLETELY from scratch, and actually make money at selling stuff online, which I NEVER believed you could do.

^^ highlights reel

On the personal side:

  • everyone I loved died.

Puts everything into perspective, doesn’t it?

So. Here’s the “look forward” part.

Because of said perspective-inducing experiences, I’m trying to LIVE.

I am grateful, and proud (where warranted) of everything I’ve been able to accomplish this past decade.

None of it would have happened without the support of my community, colleagues, teachers, students, my family, and most of all, my late husband.

But it’s in the past.

And if I am to *live* – as I say I intend to – then I have to be grateful for what is past, where I am now, and look to the future.

I’m going to talk about that in my next post, if that’s ok with you, (that “Cheers” bar is calling me…).

But for now, I would love to know:

What are YOU proud of accomplishing this past decade?

It might be in your rear-view mirror, but you DID it. Therefore, it is to be celebrated.

And, having celebrated it, you can move forward and build on it.

So, tell me – what are you über-proud of having accomplished this past decade?