Reflecting is an important part of life. I have an annual ritual at the end of every year, usually on December 31st or January 1st, where I sit down in a comfortable chair with a favorite beverage, pen and paper and write down the 100 most significant moments of that year. I gather my calendar, my photo stream of pictures taken during the year, and anything else that helps me remember the previous weeks and months. And then I start listing the 100 most significant moments of the year.
It’s really a powerful experience. You realize as you look at these hundred moments, that sometimes the moment is just a simple sunset that you shared with someone. It might be a big sporting event you went to and were so excited about. It may be a hole in one in golf. It might be some milestone event that happened in your life or someone else’s life, or a major goal that was accomplished. It might be something simple like a smile from your new grandson. It might be a conversation you had, a promotion you got at work, or an insight that you shared with somebody.
When I tell people that I do this, many people say that they could never come up with 100. I find that surprising. With 52 weeks in a year, if you have, on average, two significant moments a week, then you can come up with 100. If you can’t come up with 100 significant moments in a year, then you’re not paying attention to the significant moments in your life.
As a leader, it’s important to pay attention to when you are making a difference or when something is making a difference for you and role model acknowledgment of and share your impression of those moments.
Because I’ve done this for the past 15 years, I easily identify significant moments in the moments when they occur. Because of my experience, I stop and take notice and really appreciate those moments.
By keeping track of your 100 most significant moments of the year, you pay specific attention to what’s going on around you, what’s important to you, and you develop a deep gratitude for the significant moments in your life.
I’ve become so good at noticing significant moments, it’s now to the point where having only 100 is limiting to me. I probably pay attention to 20 or 30 significant moments in a week. Now, a big part of my 100 significant moments project is to cull down to the most significant.
Capture your 100 moments at the end of the year, but more significantly, when you have a significant moment, really pay attention to it and appreciate it.