It's never too early to plan for the new year, to set the course of one's sails in advance of its arrival. As always, this has not been the year I intended it to be - but it has been a year of hopefully substantial changes, especially in the latter half.
Why? A few reasons, I think:
1) I think I have finally started to put the failure of The Firm behind me. The final financial damages have worked themselves out, and I am far enough removed from the personalities and the events to look at them.
2) A book - provided by Bogha Frois called Conative Connection: Acting on Instinct which has provoked my thinking. In short, the book looks at how you do things, and suggests finding those goals - or even parts of the job you are currently doing - that lead to your strengths. It has been one of those books that make you say "Okay, there is a way to harness what I do". (Full disclosure: While I liked many of the ideas of the book, the author heavily markets her profiling test, developed by her, and quotes a great deal from successes of nameless big clients. Also, more into self actualization than is probably prudent. Still, a helpful book to start thinking.)
3) Conversations - Long conversations with friends and loved ones, including The Ravishing Mrs. TB, Bogha Frois, Cleasiche fionnadh, Aosdean Ruadh, Otis (go Here for his blog) and others. Probably more conversations about life which did not revolving purely around The Firm than I have had in the last five years. Conversations with the time to reason through, the space to be silent, and the willingness (is it age? or wisdom) to be honest with others and ones'self.
4) God - This has been a harder one to pin down, more my failure than His. Part of this, I think, has been His stripping away of those things I valued to pare me down to the core of being willing to obey - and even then, I still struggle. Patience, and wisdom, for example. But He is gracious, even as I am obstinate.
5) Writing - Both this blog, journaling, and working through publishing my written work as a serial. Certainly I love writing. Writing stuff down for me has a power, even if I am not always conscious of it at the time. It structures my thoughts, it makes me think, and it helps me express that which I cannot always express in words.
So now, to plan ahead...