As we ended 2022, I began reflecting upon the things I learned throughout the year. Some of these will be leadership lessons; others are things I realized about relationships, faith, and people.
It’s wise to reflect upon the things we’ve learned. If we don’t, we’ll soon forget them. Think about any time you try to learn something new. It’s the repetition and trying again and again that cements the ideas in your mind.
That’s why I’m writing this for you and for me. I want to be able to remember what I’ve learned or remembered throughout the year.
I hope some of the things I learned in 2022 will spark something in you.
22 Things I Learned In 2022
1. Selling is hard:
Reel Leadership was released at the end of 2021. Going into 2022, I knew I had a winner on my hands.
While I’m pleased with the results and progress I’ve made with the book, selling the book has been challenging.
Selling isn’t the easiest thing for me to do. I do know that it is something I must do.
Do the hard things.
2. Relationships are fragile:
I’ve seen so many relationships damaged or destroyed in 2022. Friends, family members, and others have seen their relationships drastically altered.
You can’t control how other people respond. You can only control how you respond.
3. Learning is a lifelong adventure:
In grade school and college, learning seemed like a drag. You couldn’t wait to be out of school.
However, the learning you do outside of school never ends. It may be how to fix a clothes dryer or change the brakes on your 2018 Toyota Carolla. Whatever it is, learning never ends.
It’s an adventure, too! Don’t let the experience of learning in your school years detract from the fun learning can be.
4. Consistency wins:
I’ve consistently written for this blog for over 12 years. Writing can be a chore at times. Still, writing consistently has been a win for me.
The consistency in writing reminds me that I can do hard things. When you do something over and over again, you get better. You also realize you can do the things you don’t want to do.
5. Take time to pause:
Life is hectic. The demands of work, family, and the church can drain you. You have so many commitments pulling you in every direction you feel you’ll never have free time.
That’s the sign you need to pause.
6. You’ll miss some adventures in your life:
The year 2022 was the year I was supposed to trek to Mount Everest Base Camp with Kevin DeVries, Corban Robbe, and other friends.
Due to illness, I missed the adventure. This opportunity passed me by.
I’ve had to come to terms with the fact that I missed this adventure at this point in my life.
Missing the trip doesn’t mean I will never climb Everest. It only means I missed this opportunity. There will be others.
7. Get back up:
I missed the Everest climbing trip due to my COVID-19 recovery. I was knocked down hard.
For 3 weeks, I could barely walk. I made multiple trips to the emergency room.
I felt defeated.
I wasn’t, though, far from it.
I continued to get back up and fight. I wouldn’t let this sickness be the end of me.
During and after my recovery, I had setbacks. I had to fight back and get back up.
You will too. Don’t stay down! Keep getting back up.
8. Life is short:
We all hope and think we will live to be 80, 90, or 100 years old. The truth is that many of us will pass before that time.
Life is short. Make the best of the time you have today.
9. People will make excuses for unethical behavior:
We’ve all seen sales funnels. The creator gets you into a funnel to sell you more and more items.
Sometimes, these funnels are unethical. They claim a free book, only pay shipping. Or they offer a course at a significantly discounted rate, except they never sold the program outside of the offer they’re promoting today.
I’ve pushed back on these types of offers with the promoters. I’ve been given every reason under the sun, from “It’s an effective sales tool” to “Don’t forget the other items I’m giving away for free.”
Unethical behavior is unethical regardless of whether it is effective or not. Don’t do it.
10. You’ll grow weary:
I’ve never been more tired in my life. I feel weary.
Sometimes I want to give up writing, do what I do, and just relax. I know I can’t.
People are counting on me. I have to rest and then continue.
I’ve been a frugal person most of my life. I hate to spend money on things because there might be a sale someday.
However, I’m learning more and more that it’s okay to splurge once in a while. Whether buying artwork I like, going out to dinner, or treating someone to something special, splurging is okay if you’ve got the means to do so.
12. Things change:
I’ve loved attending conferences and hanging out with people. The Catalyst Conference in Atlanta, GA, was one of my favorites.
Now, it looks like the conference is dead. They’ve changed over to an online resource with no in-person event.
Things will change and evolve. Learn when to change, evolve, or end.
13. Stop chasing trends:
We’ve been conditioned to follow trends. Whether it’s fashion trends, social trends, or social media platforms. Trends are what people follow.
I want to encourage you to stop chasing trends. Chase value, chase worth, chase meaning.
14. Laugh more:
It’s been reported that the average 40-year-old only laughs FOUR times a day. On the other hand, a child laughs 300 times a day.
I know I feel better when I laugh. I want to regain that childlike attitude of laughing. So, I will laugh more. You should too.
15. You’ll miss friends:
In 2022, we held my class’ 20th class reunion (2 years late). Seeing so many of my old classmates was a joy and pleasure.
We got to catch up. Learn about how life is treating us. It was beyond what I was expecting.
I never realized how much I missed my friends from school. But I did.
We’ll miss people we haven’t had contact with in a long time. Reach out to them. Let them know you still think about them.
16. We get into ruts:
There are activities that we do only because we’ve always done them. We put ourselves on repeat and go back again.
Find ways to break out of the ruts you’ve created for yourself if the rut is a bad thing. Discover new ideas and situations.
17. Create new connections:
One of the things I did in 2022 was to reach out to editors at various online publications. I’ve always stayed relatively isolated to my blog. This past year, I could post on sites such as Business Insider through the connections I created.
Your connections are the key to new opportunities. Reach out, build relationships.
18. Read more:
I cut back on my reading in the past couple of years. Reading had been a way to consume but never apply the information I learned. Reading was a way to feel good about myself.
I’ve missed reading. There are books I want to read. There are things I want to learn.
I’m going to read more. I want you to read more too!
19. Find what you enjoy:
I’m a lover of movies. I love watching action and adventure on the big screen. I no longer feel shame or remorse for doing so. I also love running, learning, creating, and figuring things out. These are the things I’m going to do more of in 2023.
What do you enjoy? Have you discovered it? Find what you enjoy and do it!
20. God is real:
I’ve always known this, but sometimes I can neglect the truth. God is real. He’s there for me. He can be there for you, too.
21. Life is scary good:
We don’t want to admit this, but regardless of our troubles, life is pretty darn good. Maybe even scary good.
Don’t let a bad hour or two cloud your vision. Life is good.
22. You can make it:
While life is good, there are struggles that we go through. We let our minds get clouded with doubt, fear, anger, or anxiety. This makes us think we can’t make it to tomorrow.
Banish that thought to the pits of hell.
You can make it. You are worth it.