“Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards” – Soren Kierkegaard
Reflection is a powerful process. Among other things, looking back at past experiences and memories helps us to remember the good that others have done for us and as a reminder to be grateful and say thank you. Reflection helps us to avoid making certain mistakes again; it exists as a tool to learn from our errors. Reflection enables us to make educated decisions. Above all, reflection allows us to take a step back from the busy and constantly changing thing that we call routine. You know that thing that starts when the alarm goes off and doesn’t stop until we finally get to bed; still without doing all we planned. The thing that repeats itself for five days a week and consumes all our energy and thoughts. Routine is bad. Routine will take your soul and eat away at your years. We need to break it now and again.
How Can I Break Routine?
Breaking routine is easy. Pinch yourself and realise that you are not a drone. Robots are made to work in production lines, not as a model for life! I am sure we have all felt like robots at some point; Take a minute to reflect – look back at 2012 and ask yourself if you fulfilled your dreams or met your goals? What unexpected things happened – good and bad? What things are you most proud of and what lessons have you learned?
“Sometimes, you have to look back in order to understand the things that lie ahead.”
How Will I make 2013 a Better Year?
It amuses me when I look on Facebook and see several statuses from my ‘friends’ along the lines of ‘2012 has been such a rotten year. Here’s to a better 2013‘. I have news for you guys.
2013 Will be What You Make It.
I am serious; it is up to you to make 2013 a killer year. Or to let 2013 be a disaster. Our future is exactly what we make it. Whether it be by making irresponsible financial decisions, or allowing ourselves to get unhealthy and unfit, we set ourselves up to fall. Almost all bad things in life can be prevented.
The only inevitable things in this world are Death and Change.
While you have little control over the first, you very much define the second. I am serious. It is up to you to make the change now and prepare yourself for making 2013 the best year of your life. Reflect on your past mistakes and learn from them. Make a set of goals/dreams/targets and absolutely go for it! Don’t stop until you have absolutely nailed it…. Aim for the freaking stars!! You need to be the start of your own difference… the instigator of that change. Break the stereotypes and change people’s minds. Perhaps one of my favourite motivational quotes ever is by a hero of mine – Mohammed Ali – one of the greatest boxers that ever lived.
“The fight is won or lost far away from witnesses – behind the lines, in the gym, and out there on the road, long before I dance under those lights.”
Ali is preaching that the result of the fight is already decided upon, long before the boxers enter the ring. The boxer doesn’t win the fight on the night, rather the boxer wins the fight by training… training hard. This quote can be applied to almost anything else in our lives. Only in extremely rare circumstances (luck) do we become rich in an instant; rather, we become rich by making a collection of good decisions and by following certain training plans. Being disciplined with money can be compared to being disciplined with food. Spend it on the wrong things / eat the wrong things and you can quickly lose the fight. Conversely, by training regularly and efficiently and you can easily win; the concept is not difficult; sustainability is the problem.
Furthermore, get the right training plan / saving plan and you can live with reduced stress. Start saving early and you have the peace of mind that you are ready for anything that life can throw at you. Stop being envious of others – make the change in yourself.
Highlights from 2012
There is no future without a past, because what is to be cannot be imagined except as a form of repetition
As the end 0f 2012 approaches, I reflect over the last year and think about all the things that have happened and how I have grown. 2012 was a Huge year for me and I don’t think I will have such an eventful one for a while! Here are five of my highlights
- I Married My Soul mate – Almost a year ago, I traveled to Thailand to wed the girl of my dreams. I welcomed in 2012 in the best way ever on the shores of Phuket; setting off fireworks, drinking copious amounts of beer and surrounded by my loved ones. I experienced two of the best weeks of my life.
- We Bought a House – We made the biggest financial commitment that a couple can make and bought a house. A two-bedroom palace of independence – our first home.
- We Went on our Honeymoon and Got Certified – we visited the paradise island of Roatan and finished our Rescue Diver Course; another step towards our goal of Divemaster! I Absolutely loved that fortnight!
- We spent lots of time with our families and with each other. Through visiting on weekends and hosting family in our new home; we involved them immensely in our lives. We gave each other the most precious gift of all – time.
- SavvyScot was Created – Almost ten months ago to the day!
The question I am asking myself now, is what is 2013 going to bring? What changes do I need to make to prepare for the future and what can I do better? To be continued…
What was your single biggest highlight of 2012? Why was it so special to you?
Did you enjoy this Self-Development type post? Here are the most popular posts from over the last year:
Defining Purpose and the Importance of Moderation
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P.S. Have you seen this video on Social Media? Time to get tweetin’ likin’ pinnin’ folks!
Maybe a baby scot? 🙂 My biggest highlight was deciding to relocate under the sun and keep living life on my terms.
Pauline recently posted..Little house in Guatemala, week 6
hahahah! I wondered who would be the first to say that… not for a whiley yet Pauline!! You have had a pretty big change too huh 😉
Wow, 2012 was a huge year for you. Good luck in 2013. I think waiting a bit for baby Scot is a good idea. Kids are so much work.
Joe recently posted..Dealing With The Holiday Guilt
John S @ Frugal Rules says
Great post! I could not agree more. Though, I second Pauline’s idea…a baby Scot?! 🙂 Seriously though, 2012 was great for me…the birth of our last (as far as I know)and leaving my terribly horrible corporate job to help my wife run our business. Life is what you make of it, that and how you react to the change that happens around you. I say, take the bull by the horns and see what’s possible!
John S @ Frugal Rules recently posted..Giveaway: Win an iPad 3 For Yourself This Christmas!
Haha! Not you too John… Give it time! 🙂 You certainly made a huge leap in 2012… I look forward to seeing what 2013 has to bring for you 🙂
You had a pretty spectacular year! and agreed, having done all of the above the only thing that can top it will be the birth of your first child. I’m excited for what 2013 has in store for us!
Catherine recently posted..Money, Feminism and Divorce?
Sure did… and certainly not!! 😛
Jeremy @Structured Settlement Quotes says
Damn that was an eventful year. My 2012 was more about changes than huge events like that. After being with my girlfriend for over 7 years, we broke up and now I’m with someone better. With my web business I decided to go in a different direction and start my blog. Then I landed a sweet daytime job. With those changes 2013 is shaping up to be pretty awesome.
You have built yourself an immense foundation to start 2013!!!
Jeremy @ Structured Settlement Quotes says
I’d say we both have. Yours is more established in some areas though. It is exciting to think what lies ahead in 2013. If everything keeps heading in the right direction, it should be a very satisfying year.
You got any big plans for 2013 J-dawg?
Joe Cassandra says
Mine was to finally start my site and launch in Sept, thanks for all your help and inspiration so far savvy!
Joe Cassandra recently posted..Use Less Energy to Automate Yourself to Success More Efficiently
You have done a great job to date Joe … Keep it up buddy
Your wedding sounds heavenly! I hope that you have an awesome 2013.
HollyClubThrifty recently posted..Enter Our iPad3 Giveaway!!!
Thanks Holly – and you guys! 🙂
Veronica @ Pelican on Money says
It sounds like it was a very special year for you! I’m very happy to hear others being happy 🙂 Congrats on getting married and having a blast!
If there were any “highlights” this year for me, I guess it would be starting a new job and moving to a nicer town. The last place I lived was a hell hole. Loud neighbors, 110F degree heat with no working air conditioning.
Veronica @ Pelican on Money recently posted..Pros and Cons of Making Money With an Online Store
Thanks a lot Veronica! A nice town can seriously improve your overall happiness 😀
Budget and the Beach says
What an amazing year you’ve had! And what a great post. I agree that your years in the future and the past is what you make of it. I’ve never had a bad year. I look at years as growth experiences. And hey, it’s still 2012 so it’s not even like it’s over. I don’t know yet what my ONE biggest highlight was. I need to do more reflection on that. GREAT post!
Budget and the Beach recently posted..5 Tips to Avoid the Winter Spending Blizzard
GREAT to hear that!! 😀 Thanks for the kudos… and I like that you are such a positive person too!
Wow, big, big year! Congrats!
I just did my 2012 review this weekend. Lots of (smallish) things happened – standouts are probably our two-week national road trip and the time I jumped out of a plane.
Next year it will be our wedding!
eemusings recently posted..2012 in review
Skydiving was my highlight in 2009… it is absolutely breathtaking… I will be sure to check out your post too!
Mo' Money Mo' Houses says
I always love this time of year to reflect on everything. Generally this year was good. I mean there were lots of downs with the ups, but I also believe that life is what you make of it.
Abso-freaking-lutely! Glad to hear 2012 has been (mainly) good to you Jess 🙂
Jamie Dickinson says
Congrats on a year well done! I also got married this year! 2012 was perhaps our toughest year so far with jobs etc. But everything is working out great now and comparatively, the married side of things was a breeze – which further cements the fact that I married the absolute best girl in the world.
I’ve got big plans for 2013, so I’ll keep check back here for motivation!
Jamie Dickinson recently posted..Terrible Money Saving Tips
Glad to hear that your marriage was so special! What are your plans for 2013?
Jamie Dickinson says
Gonna try and dump the marketing side of my career and focus exclusively on design. Been wanting to do it for years, but always made excuses. Now I feel I have improved enough and have confidence to do it.
We were also planning on trying for a baby in 2013, but with a potential job change, we’ll see.
Jamie Dickinson recently posted..New Christmas Deals and Vouchercodes
Good for you dude! I say go for it and don’t look back. Can you hook me up with a new logo? As for the baby – will keep my fingers crossed for your guys!
Jamie Dickinson says
Drop us an email in the new year, and we can have a crack at it.
Jamie Dickinson recently posted..Cutting the Cost of New Years Eve
Glen @ Monster Piggy Bank says
That’s a pretty big year. Getting married is one of the best things that ever happened to me. Being able to share your life with someone you care about is truly one of my favourite things about life.
My 2012 had the highest of highs and the lowest of lows, so it was pretty mixed bag.
Glen @ Monster Piggy Bank recently posted..Tattoos at work – Does it impact on your employment opportunities?
I 100% absolutely agree. Finding your soulmate is so special… Any big plans for 2013? (other than our eBook taking over the world?) 🙂
Death & Change are not the only inevitable things – tax too 😉
Jeez, your blog is younger than mine – but it’s doing so well! (Might be to do with the fact you update and it’s always awesome) – I really need time to work on mine!
Emma recently posted..How those old games could make you a bit of Christmas spending money
Taxes Taxes Taxes …. How could I forget… maybe it is called wishful thinking?!!?
Thanks for the Kudos… I am enjoying your blog too! 🙂
Reflection is a powerful thing and something I’ve neglected over the past 6 months or so as our schedules have gone out of control.
I’d say the biggest highlight of 2012 that I have is simply becoming a financial advisor. It’s been a lot of studying and major life transitions for me as of late, and it’s nice to finally do a job that I enjoy.
Jason recently posted..US Bank FlexPerks® Travel Rewards Visa Signature® Card
I say you get on it! 😛 That is a great achievement for 2012 –
DC @ Young Adult Money says
The similarities between your past year are very similar to mine. You have to go back to September of 2011, but since then I have gotten married, went on an awesome honeymoon, bought a house, and started Young Adult Money. All big things.
I am really looking forward to 2013, and was thinking this morning of how I need to set some solid goals to work towards throughout the year. I have a few in mind that I would like to tackle, but just need to get it down on paper (and in a post).
DC @ Young Adult Money recently posted..How Networking Can Benefit Your Career
Crazy… I never realised how similar we were!! 🙂 Looking forward to reading about your goals for 2013
Christopher @ This that and the MBA says
Pretty tough to out do 2012….Here’s to hoping that 2013 can be better…
Christopher @ This that and the MBA recently posted..Using Online Tools to Manage a Household Budget
Cheers Chris… I agree, but less ‘major events’ I hope – not many of them left (that I want anyway)!!!
Jordann @ My Alternate Life says
Wow that IS an eventful year! The biggest change in my life I think is that I adopted the best dog in the world. Next year will be bigger though, next year I’m going to pay off my student loans and get married.
Jordann @ My Alternate Life recently posted..My Debt By Numbers
Derek @ Freeat33 says
Best wishes for your marriage and debt repayment. Yes, in that order 🙂 Remember getting married is what counts, not your chair covers 🙂
Derek @ Freeat33 recently posted..Nobody likes a know it all
Absolutely Derek – will never get those two the wrong way around!
Looking forward to hearing about the marriage… We really want to get a dog!!! 🙂
What a wonderful year!
Highlight of my year (outside of family stuff), seeing the Yankees play in NY.
That sounds amazing… may actually be worthy of getting added to my bucket list!
Jacob @ iheartbudgets says
Sounds like a great year! I rmember the year I got married was the coolest! This year, We had our first child, and that has pretty much rocked our world the whole year. Been LOVING IT! Three cheers for an even better 2013! 🙂
Jacob @ iheartbudgets recently posted..iPad 3 Giveaway!
That sounds amazing…. not ready for it yet, but definitely excited. Any big plans for 2013?
Stephen S. says
As always great post Savvy. I did fell like a robot in 2012, but out of choice. I did it, so 2013 could be the best year ever. Merry Christmas mate
Stephen S. recently posted..Photo Friday: The Acropolis
Thanks a lot Steve! I can’t wait to follow your journey in 2013!!
My single best highlight of 2012 was finishing school, finally. I came to Canada after marrying the woman of my dreams and now I’m working in a career I never thought possible. I’m lucky to have both true love and a career I am passionate about. The second best would be the blog.. does that count? Cheers mate! MR.CBB
Canadianbudgetbinder recently posted..Bank Sales In Canada ….. Not The Same As Bank Foreclosures In The U.S.A
That is a freaking amazing achievement Mr CBB!! I also rank having true love being the best!
Aloysa @ My Broken Coin says
Wow, your year was much more bigger than mine. 🙂 Did not get married but did not get divorced either. Went on a cruise and hated it. Got ski gear for cross country skiing and got sick. Still hoping to try it out this year. Honestly, the year was pretty uneventful and boring. But I like it this way. 🙂 We will see what 2013 brings.
Aloysa @ My Broken Coin recently posted..Personal and Financial Lessons of 2012
Lack of divorce is ALWAYS good! 🙂 I am interested to hear you hated your cruise.. It is something that I would personally never want to do. What were your reasons out of interest?
I LOVE x-country skiing!
Digital Personal Finance says
Sounds like a great year! You’re totally right in that making 2013 or any other year great is up to us individually. It’s all up to us to get it done. Great things rarely come crashing down from the sky out of the blue into our lives. It takes our efforts and energy. I’m pumped for 2013, and also for getting a head start on it now 🙂
Digital Personal Finance recently posted..5 Ways Bloggers Can Use Fiverr to Outsource Tasks
Cheers! You are spot on – we are each responsible for our own destiny. Take a long time for some people to realise this… some never do! What you got planned for 2013?
Sounds like a pretty awesome 2012! What are your plans for 2013? 🙂
My biggest milestones this year were: buying a condo, starting a serious relationship, and starting a new job. Lots of new beginnings! I’m pretty confident that I won’t start a new job or move in 2013, so I think it will have less change than 2012.
Leigh recently posted..Brownbag Lunches
Thanks Leigh! I have a lot of plans for 2013 – need to sit down and actually work out which ones I am going to concentrate on. I sense a post next week 😀
Buying a condo is an awesome achievement – where about was that? Sometimes it is good to have less active years in terms of ‘major changes’ I think!
Congrats on a very successful 2012. Sounds like you’ve accomplished a lot. All the best for 2013.
My single biggest highlight of 2012 was the ability to comfortably by the car that I used to dream about only two years ago – when I was in debt.
Eddie recently posted..Responsible Holiday Party Hosting
Cheers Eddie 🙂 That is absolutely awesome … what car was it?
Jason Clayton | frugal habits says
I have nothing monumental for 2012, but it has been a joy to see my 2 little girls go from 3-4years old and 1-2 years old. They are my life and I love them so much!
Jason Clayton | frugal habits recently posted..5 Family Activities I’m looking forward to this Winter
That sounds pretty monumental to me – Congrats 🙂
Mandy @ MoneyMasterMom says
haha maybe you’ll finally work out your complicated relationship with Crystal from BFS in 2013. Good luck with whatever you set your mind too.
Mandy @ MoneyMasterMom recently posted..You’ve just won 1 million dollars! No Thanks…I think
Haha! Don’t think that will ever happen
K.K. @ Living Debt Free Rocks! says
Congratulations on so many great accomplishments this year! I also had a banner year in 2012. I married the love of my life after a 3 1/2 year long distance courtship, relocated to a new country, I will be debt free in 7 days, I started my blog, we increased our incomes…man I could go on. We are really blessed and we are really looking forward to what we’ll achieve in 2013!
K.K. @ Living Debt Free Rocks! recently posted..My Weekly T.G.I.F.
Thanks KK – Your year sounds amazing!! And 7 days… WOW what an achievement 🙂