Check Your Rearview Mirror

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One of my favorite things about this time of year is when companies provide a summary of my interaction with them. Whether it be the (food) item I ordered most frequently, the music I most listened to, or the kind of content I streamed most, I am here for it all.

Now, to be sure, the things you learn from these summaries shouldn’t really surprise you. I mean, I know I listened to the album my church produced this year, but what I didn’t know was that I was in the top 4% of listeners. That’s the kind of granular detail I find really interesting because it reveals some things I didn’t know about myself; things having to do with intensity and amplitude.

Clearly, that album gave me a lot of joy and even when I had the whole world of music at my fingertips, I chose that, time and again.

Traditionally, we consider self-reflection something we do that comes from within, but this time of year, there’s a lot of data that can help function as a mirror, reflecting from outside yourself. This information can help you know where there is fatigue or excitement. Things like… what emails that, if you never got another of, it would be too soon? What news stories do you need to minimize exposure to? What people, relationships, or groups do you need a break from? What did you expect to be excited about, but when it finally happened, you didn’t care as much as you thought you might?

Alternately, maybe you rediscovered a passion for a hobby you had set aside or found time for something you had been putting off, that ended up providing a lot of joy. If so, maybe it’s time to take those things to the next level or try something related.

Having this kind of perspective is a great way to know what you need more or less of. Armed with this knowledge, you can make decisions that better support how you want the new year to begin.

As we end 2021, may I humbly suggest you check your rearview mirror, then take what you learn and prep your windshield for 2022. And if you need something to listen to while you do it, I have an album I can recommend…