The Road Not Taken
~Robert Frost (1916)
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
Though having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same.
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads onto way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh,
Somewhere ages and ages hence;
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I-
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
What 2019 Will Be Like
International presenter, author, and my friend Thomas Crum a long time ago introduced me to a powerful visualization technique. He asked us to partner up with someone and--imagining that it's one year in the future--reflect with gratitude on specific things that happened in the past year. In other words, you're reflecting from a future vantage point on a year that hasn't happened yet, and you're telling your partner how thankful you are that certain specific things took place. Can you see the power?
You ask yourself what your hopes are for 2019, then imagine you're looking back a year from now and all your hopes and wishes have come true, been achieved, or manifested in some way.
- What will your relationships look like?
- How many people will you have helped and in what way?
- What kindnesses have been offered to you?
Finances, relationships, workplace achievements, mental and physical health--there are no limits except the ones you create. Imagine being free of the "stuckness" that surrounds difficult relationships and internal struggles, having the conversations you've been worrying over, finding the hidden gifts underneath. And sharing the happiness you feel.
Here are the steps:
- Find a partner who's willing to engage, and explain the activity to them.
- Think about what you'd be grateful for if 2019 was the best year of your life.
- Express this to your partner in the past tense, starting with "I'm very grateful for/that...".
You don't have to know how your hopes will have come about, or even believe they will. Just try it out.
- I'm really grateful that my new book has turned out to be such a success. It's sold over 5,000 copies this past year, and that means I'm helping a lot of people sort through conflict in the workplace.
- I'm grateful I've been healthy this year, and was able to fulfill my work commitments and be present when my family needed me.
- I'm happy it was such a good year for my mother, and that she's active and enjoying her life in Illinois.
- We really enjoyed our trip to (pick a place you want to go!). It was everything we'd hoped it would be.
- My partner and I are both well, and our relationship is the best it's ever been.
- I got that promotion I was hoping for, and I love my new job.
Life is What You Make It
"What 2019 Will Be Like" depends on us. If my aunt Mimi is right, and "life is what you make it" -- what will you make it? How will you dream up your personal, professional, and relational life? What actions will you take today that will cause you to be grateful a year from now? And how will your ki, your life energy, and that of others be freed up because of your choices?
For my part, I'd like to extend a big thank you for your loyal readership. Please let me know what I can do to make Ki Moments more helpful. And please take a look at my new book, currently in pre-sales (see below).
I'm looking forward to looking back a year from now with gratitude and wonder!
My new book--Turn Enemies Into Allies--presents a coaching intervention process for employees in conflict—a four-phase guide for managers, HR professionals, school administrators, and other leaders to coach conflicting employees back to a professional, effective working relationship, while simultaneously changing their lives for the better.
Sneak peek here.