Declaring 2023 Complete

Declaring 2023 Complete

It’s time to take rigorous inventory of any unfinished business from 2023 you may still be holding on to.

If you haven’t already closed the chapter on 2023, start there. You will find the exercise worthwhile. If you’ve completed the former, read on.

Declaring 2023 complete will allow you to begin 2024 with a clean slate. And don’t we all want a fresh start?

So, let’s explore together.

What Unfinished Business is There?

If you don’t already have your journal in front of you, you may grab it now.

It’s time to identify anything and everything that still occupies your mind, whether in the forefront or in the background.

When you’re ready, consider the following areas and make note of any unfinished business that comes to mind:

  • Finances
  • Health
  • Relationships
  • Spirituality
  • Career or business
  • Family
  • Personal development
  • Social
  • Physical
  • Recreation

What is unfinished or incomplete? Take your time and think deeply.

If you have emotion attached to anything that comes to mind, there’s a very good chance that you aren’t complete with said person, event, or circumstance. Write it down.

If the story you’re telling yourself about 2024 is that it will be the same as 2023, or that it will be worse, you’re hanging on to constraints from the past. Write it down.

If you’re frustrated, sad, or circumstantially depressed about 2024, your past experiences are running the show. Write it down.

What is the Impact of This Unfinished Business?

Whatever unfinished business you may be holding on to, it’s making you feel a certain way – nervous, anxious, angry, disappointed, frustrated, or otherwise.

We’ll consider emotions in a moment. For now, we want to look at the impact.

For instance, has your email been piling up? It may seem like a small thing, but this can impact many areas of life. For example:

  • It could be eroding your confidence in your ability to get things done.
  • It could be making you feel nervous because of due dates and unfinished tasks.
  • It could be affecting your relationships because you’re thinking about your emails when you should be present with your friends or family.

Make a thorough inventory for every person, event, or circumstance you identified in the previous step. Become fully aware of the impact.

Unfinished business can impact your well-being, health, finances, relationships, affinity with others, and more.

What Emotions Have You Attached to the Unfinished Business?

There are always emotions attached to unfinished business. The question is – what are you feeling?

For all intents and purposes, I will leave out “positive” emotions, but consider which of the following apply to your circumstance, and write them down:

  • Fear
  • Anger
  • Disgust
  • Sadness
  • Anxiety
  • Envy
  • Shame
  • Guilt
  • Frustration
  • Disappointment
  • Hopelessness
  • Horror

Simply identify all the feelings that apply.

If there are other words that seem to fit your situation better, you may freely select them. Write them down.

Declare Your Emotions Complete

The final step is to declare your emotions complete. It may seem altogether too easy, but it works!

I am going to give you a script to say out loud. It’s short and simple.

Note: You will be declaring the emotions you identified earlier complete, so have those handy.

When you’re ready, say this out loud:

I allow myself to let go of all that no longer serves me or my highest good.

I give myself permission to let go, release, surrender, and submit all that has happened in my life in 2023.

I release all past decisions, choices, and attachments that no longer serve my highest good.

I declare ______, ______, ______ (name the emotions you identified in the previous step) complete.

I declare, decree, direct, instruct, command, and order completion over 2023 and I am ready to accept and receive all the goodness and blessings that 2024 has to offer.

Thank you.

Sit in silence for a minute after you’ve said the above and notice whether anything bubbles to the surface.

If you did the exercise correctly, you should feel a release. A heavy weight may lift. Dark clouds may clear. Your heart may open. Many people tear up. Whatever comes up, it’s okay. It’s old energies leaving your body.

It’s also okay if you felt nothing, but there is a chance you aren’t clear on the impact of your way of being yet. Go back, dig deeper, and try reading the above script again.

Declaring 2023 Complete

I hope you enjoyed this exercise, and I can’t wait to hear how it went for you. Please leave a comment and let me know what you experienced.

I’m Finally Having Fun in Business Again

I’m Finally Having Fun in Business Again

And I ended up speculating on numerous reasons as to why that is.

I thought to myself:

  • Okay, maybe it’s because I just completed v0.7 of the Productivity, Performance & Profits Blackbook. Maybe I’ve been craving that feeling of accomplishment that comes from reaching a major milestone on a project like this.
  • Maybe it’s because I’ve finally found some fantastic ways of repurposing the reams of content I’ve created in a more meaningful way… although I have been doing this since last summer.
  • Maybe my actions are more in alignment with my intentions and goals.
  • Maybe it’s because I’m less focused on income, and because I’ve been giving more. Giving has been freeing. I feel like it’s like saying to your brain, “there’s plenty, there’s always something left over, and there’s always more on its way.”

Then I remembered.

I recently declared the last phase of my business complete.

That’s the real answer. There’s no mistaking it.

Previously, I felt like the weight of it was going to crush me. I thought it might take a while to process it all. But it didn’t. Declaring it complete freed me very rapidly.

My level of enjoyment recently changed to such a degree that the difference was noticeable. And now there’s an opening where none previously existed. I’m free to engage in the new phase of my business.

I Declare This Phase of My Business Complete

I Declare This Phase of My Business Complete

It hadn’t even occurred to me.

Every six months, you should complete, end, finish. Whatever’s going on in your business, complete it, start over, and move on.

As these words were exiting a guest speaker’s mouth, I realized just how many incompletes I’d been harboring in my own business.

I still find myself thinking about podcast series I started but never finished, books I meant to write but never wrote, blog posts I started but left sitting on my hard drive.

I think about the explosive traffic I had in 2018. I think about the people who reached out to me from California, interested in collaborating or investing with me. I think about the deposit I made with an agency to book podcast interviews. Basically, nothing ever came of any of it.

The list goes on and on.

And despite how much I talk about completion in my own writing, I’ve found a niche in my life rife with incompletion – my business. I’m living in the past when I could be living in the present. I could be creating a future and living into it. Meanwhile, I’m still trying to fix something that happened back there. It robs me of the present.

So, I’m declaring this phase of my business complete.

It doesn’t mean I won’t be delivering on certain promises I’ve made. Flashes of Elation is still coming, and perhaps I can still book those podcast interviews.

But most things aren’t worth saving. I need to let go of everything else.

I need to let go of disappointments. I need to let go of whatever I haven’t done. Or I need to have a conversation to get it complete. To share with the world (probably in a podcast) what I’ve decided, even if it’s just to acknowledge what I haven’t done and have no intention of doing anymore.

I’m reminded of a Derek Sivers post, and in times like these, it brings me comfort, and even freedom.

Goals shape the present, not the future.

Goals you’ve been putting off are bad goals. If they are not moving you to action, they don’t serve a purpose.

There’s no need to remain loyal to past projects, goals, ambitions, or ideals. You can change your mind, and it’s okay.

Most of what has been sitting with me for longer than a month or two, I will probably never do. I probably couldn’t even tell you what it was.

Letting go of this baggage is freeing. It allows me to transition to the next phase of my transformed business.

How to Make 2023 Your Most Productive Year Yet

How to Make 2023 Your Most Productive Year Yet

Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort. – Paul J. Meyer

Are you determined to make 2023 a better year than the last? Do want to look back on 2023, when all is said and done, and be proud of yourself and what you’ve accomplished?

No matter what your 2022 was like, 2023 can be a breakthrough year for you if you set yourself up to win. Here’s how to do exactly that:

Identify or Dig Deeper into Your “Why”

We’re all capable of getting more done.

And you may be saying to yourself, “that’s not true – if I knew how, I would already be doing more, and I would not be reading this article!”

No, it’s not “how” that matters. It’s why.

Baptist minister and rights leader Benjamin Mays said:

The tragedy in life doesn’t lie in not reaching your goal. The tragedy lies in having no goal to reach.

We must be clear on the goal. We must be clear on our why. This sets into motion not just the want to be more productive, but the need to be more productive.

Our purpose informs our goals, and our goals inform our activity. When these are in perfect alignment, we’ll never be caught in the motivation trap, trying to pump ourselves up for things we don’t even want to do. Besides, motivation doesn’t last, unless you fuel up on it daily.

You’ll know when you’ve identified your “why,” because it will move you. It will make you cry; it will spring you to action, it will keep you up at night just thinking about it.

And if you already know your “why,” then dig deeper into it. There may be an aspect of your purpose you’re not present to yet and added clarity will only make the fire burn brighter.

Once we have the foundational mindset bit covered, we can move onto tactics and tools. Until then, methodologies and techniques matter not. Your “why” is your foundation.

Focus on Process, Not Outcome

When it comes to productivity, we often miss the forest for the trees.

If you look at the matter closely, you’ll see that what you’re after in any endeavor is not the outcome. Reaching your goals may make you happy for a few minutes, maybe an hour, but that’s all you get. Chances are, there won’t even be a party in your honor unless you throw it.

What we’re after is a feeling – the feeling of having something we desire. And that feeling is largely found in the process. Outcomes are worth celebrating, but no matter the achievement, the novelty of it will wear off in short order. The juice truly is in the process.

World champion mountain biker Sonya Looney says:

… how do you create a goal-setting system that will help you not only get what you want, but also feel satisfied and motivated on a daily basis? The trick is to stop focusing on the end point and instead start focusing on your process. If you can feel good about your daily actions working toward something important to you, it will help you stay on track.

What systems do you have to keep you on track? If the process is truly more important than the outcome, then you need a process for the process. Without that, you will be torn every which way.

All things being equal, those with structures to fulfill on their desired outcomes are more likely to achieve their goals than those who don’t. Creating structures is what it looks like to focus on process rather than outcome.

Cause Completion

We carry baggage from the past as though we’re entitled to it, and then blame the world when our experience of life stays about the same or gradually worsens.

Think of it this way. If you had a bad breakup once, and every time you ran into someone that reminded you of the person you broke up with, what are you most likely to do? Run the other way.

Because of the traumas, pains, and hurts we carry, we end up letting the past run our lives, often oblivious to who’s running the show.

Moreover, we don’t recognize that completion is available. It must be created, but it is available.

Where is completion created? In conversation. Completion can also be declared, and it can be created in the actions we take as well. But don’t expect to find completion where there is no action.

For a bit of “tough love,” I always like to turn to author and lecturer Werner Erhard. Here’s a brilliant quote about forgiveness and completion:

People often don’t understand what is involved in forgiving. They think that if somebody does something wrong, and you forgive them, that is like saying that it was alright to do it that time – but don’t dare do it again. But life doesn’t work that way; and it’s stupid or hypocritical to forgive someone on that basis. If somebody does something, you can be sure that he or she will do it again. That is why I prefer to talk about ‘making space’ and ‘completion.’ To the extent that forgiveness is involved, it is more like self-forgiving and self-acceptance. When you forgive yourself for something, you have to create the space for that thing to exist. For whatever you resist, and fail to make space for, will indeed manifest itself in you.

What will completion do for you? It will leave you free and clear to focus on the present instead of relying on the past for every decision. And that creates new possibilities in your life. Enjoy the ride, because if you intentionally cause completion in every area of life you see to, life will become unpredictable (and fun) once again.

Conclusion

I am biased, of course, but I believe there’s nothing quite like making an investment in yourself to “seal the deal.” It’s fun to read articles and try different tools, but at the end of the day, making a commitment to yourself is what’s going to make the difference in 2023.

My Productivity, Performance & Profits Blackbook documents all my best ideas and methodologies around productivity, as well as those I’ve picked up from high performers and top achievers. Normally, it costs $57 USD, but you can pre-order it until February 28, 2023, for just $10 USD. Click here to learn more.

What will you be taking on in 2023? What productivity processes have you implemented? What actions do you see to take in making this your best year yet?

6 Things I Completed Today

6 Things I Completed Today

I’ve shared about creating completion before, but the concept may seem mercurial if you don’t know what it’s supposed to look like.

Today, I wanted to share about a few things I’ve completed… today. Why should you care about what I’m up to? You shouldn’t.

Rather, you should look at this post as though you were looking into a mirror to uncover incompletion in your life, and to identify what actions you can take to restore wholeness and integrity in your life.

Here are five things I completed today.

I Contributed to Sahakarini

Which isn’t to say this will be the last time I will be contributing to underprivileged children in South America and related projects.

To be transparent with you, I was experiencing some financial difficulty throughout year one of the two-year leadership program I’m still amid. As result, I wasn’t immediately able to contribute the full amount to Sahakarini I had originally collected.

But I kept track of every cent, making small donations to the cause as I was able, fulfilling on promises I’d originally made in 2021. Finally, today, I’m fully caught up.

This is not to draw attention to my humanitarian efforts. I don’t own a non-profit, and the main way I give back is by raising funds and making donations out of my own pocket (so, buy my products – it’s good for humanity 😉).

But I do value transparency, which is why you can see the full amount my team and I have raised and donated to the cause here.

I Paid a Friend Back

The leadership program I referenced earlier is split up into quarters, and each quarter is full of upheaval, change, and discovery.

Most quarters, I join friends at an Airbnb, preferably at a nearby but desirable destination for a weekend (because the leadership program dedicates one weekend per quarter completing the last and starting the new).

I ended up owing a bit of money to a friend for an extra night’s stay on one such weekend, which I finally paid off today.

Not owing any money sure feels good (all that’s left now is my consolidated debt).

I Created 2 ARTiculate Posts

As I’ve shared before, I am the host of an initiative called ARTiculate with The Indie YYC. Generally, I produce two posts per month around which (provocative) community discussions can take place.

These are often created in the moment, but today, I managed to batch two posts, which I have already scheduled in our content queue.

If you’d like to follow along, then be sure to follow The Indie YYC on Facebook or Instagram.

I Invoiced 2 Clients

I honestly don’t know why it’s taken me so long to do this. I could have invoiced both at the beginning of the month. But to be fair, 2023 has been quite explosive out of the gate.

I can’t quite say I’m on top of everything now, but it does feel good to get a few things off my plate. Using ClickUp to manage my to-do list helps.

I Completed One Section of the Forthcoming Productivity, Performance & Profits Blackbook

I’m promising something big with the forthcoming Productivity, Performance & Profits Blackbook. If you missed my update about it, you can read about it here.

I don’t have a ton of new content to produce for this endeavor, but there is a great deal to do in terms of collating relevant content, reviewing it, editing it, and formatting it for the new book.

Today, I compiled, added, and edited all relevant sections from The Music Entrepreneur Companion Guide. One down, not too sure how many more to go, but a good start, nevertheless.

I Completed This Blog Post

Obviously, or you wouldn’t be reading it…

But in case you didn’t know, I am blogging daily again. I expect to be able to transition into podcasting more instead of just writing, but writing is enjoyable to me, and it’s fun to be able to write on topics you (yes, you – not me) care about.

If there’s something you’d like me to cover in a future post, just let me know.

Final Thoughts

I’m aware that there are more loose ends and open loops to complete in my life, and I intend to identify all or as many as possible, bringing completion to each.

I have found organizing my desktop and sending projects to “later” or “never” files very cathartic and much needed besides. I know for certain that email is going to be another great place to look (although I am resisting it) …

What could you complete in 2023 that you’ve been holding onto? What actions do you see to take now? What could be possible for you if you spent time each week completing the past?