I wrote this article for myself. I want to remember what I learned in 2021. I hope you find it helpful. 15 life-changing realizations; here we go:
Self-awareness & Strategy
- Pain was never the problem; it was always the signal. I fell during my summer holidays, and my hand was hurting. I did not try to numb or ignore the pain and went to the hospital immediately. It turned out my hand was broken.
- The earlier we listen to the discomfort and take action, the easier the realignment will be. Due to my quick action, the doctor at the hospital managed to realign the bone manually and saved me from surgery. I have found that if you do not listen to the whispers, the universe will start shouting at you. Start listening to the whispers.
- The rule of the 20 gigs. When I learned stand-up comedy a few years ago, I was told that I needed to do 20 gigs to get comfortable with the stage. With family and work, I never got to do 20 comedy gigs. But, in 2021, I did more than 20 podcast interviews to promote my book, as well as more than 30 daily insight videos. I achieved something I had not achieved through decades of public speaking courses and striving. I now love public speaking. Due to this breakthrough, you will see a lot more group programs and masterclasses from me in 2022. If you want to get comfortable doing something, try doing 20 gigs.
- Working smart will always trump working hard. My podcast interview in the Lovejoy Hour created more response and revenue for my business than 20 other podcasts combined. Put in your hours, but after some point, be more selective about doing the right work rather than a lot of work.
- Book the celebration before you hit the milestone. After you hit a milestone, you feel gratitude and excitement for a minimal time. You immediately move on to desiring the next thing. That is why you need to plan the celebration before you hit the milestone. I celebrated very intentionally in 2021 and created memories that will last a lifetime.
Business and Wealth
- The compound effect works in business too. Our work, like our investments compounds. We just need to stay in the game long enough for the compounding to become significant. If you double a penny every day, you will only have 16 pennies in five days. It might look too slow. But, you will have more than £5M in 30 days. I more than doubled the size of my business in 2021. Stay in the game long enough for compounding to do its magic.
- Everything I spend from a place of alignment makes me richer. This year, I worked a lot on my money mindset, especially getting comfortable with investing. I relaunched my website. I hired an instructional designer who had worked with Harvard to help me create my Hold Successful Meetings course. I invested more than £25K in coaching and training for myself. I had some amazing holidays. I have practiced feeling abundance even when I pay my tax bill. Say it with me: Everything I spend from a place of alignment, makes me richer.
- Doing the right thing will pay off in ways you could not have expected. Last year, I chased a client for months to offer her a refund as she achieved her objective of changing jobs after only a couple of coaching sessions. She appreciated the unsolicited refund and introduced me to a VC colleague. The VC colleague loved my work and recommended me to one of their portfolio startups. My company got a high five-figure coaching contract for coaching the startup leadership team. A £2K refund converted indirectly to multiple 5-figures. Doing well by doing good, let’s go!
- I am free to design my business as I want. I got Covid over the summer. In these 10 days of illness and isolation, I made some big decisions. I moved my business to a 4-day week, and I booked 12 weeks of holiday per year. I implemented it immediately and took the whole of August off. My most recent quarter was the best quarter in the lifetime of my business. New clients get excited when I tell them the number of holidays I get. Many want me to help them design a lifestyle of freedom for themselves too.
- Your Nos will be as crucial as your Yeses. I had to say no to many opportunities and people this year. Sometimes it was hard. It always paid off by allowing the space for more aligned ideas and opportunities to emerge.
- The lonely genius is a myth. This was the title of my signature talk this year and one of my favourite phrases from my book. My assistant Sophie came to the business in 2021 and added so much value to our clients and me that I could not have imagined. All my clients who were working with my other Leaderpath coaches renewed their contracts because they were so happy. I can focus more on what I do best. Peloton was right: Together, we go far.
- Relationships are personal. I had my heart broken several times this year by professional relationships. This helped me understand how emotional we are with our work relationships. And, how to manage those relationships better in the future. It is OK for my heart to break. That’s how the light comes in.
- Handle difficult conversations like they are being broadcasted in your LinkedIn feed. This mantra got me through some difficult situations with grace this year.
- Being human will connect with people the most. I cried when I first saw my printed book. I thought of maybe not sharing the video on my social media. But I did. It was some of my most viral content of 2021. The most viral article I have ever written was when I left Google. I described how I went to the toilets to cry on my last day. People do not want perfection from us; they want humanity.
- We are more loved than we think. One of the highlights of my year was my book Hold Successful Meetings becoming a #1 Amazon bestseller in its category in many markets. This was all from my network; no promotion was done in those markets. People will surprise you by how supportive they can be given the opportunity.
Which one of my lessons resonated the most with you? What were the lessons you learned in 2021?