Instead, I want to take this time to renew (and maybe reinvent), starting with my thinking. Of course, I looked up the definition of renew. I saw these possibilities:
- Make new, as in restore. (Which seems like a slightly strange definition to me, but I’ll talk about it below.)
- Resume some of my previous activities.
- Repeat, as in reaffirm.
Let me start with the “make new,” as in restore.
Make New (Restore) With Change
When we have massive societal changes, we can’t just “restore” our worlds to the way they worked before. However, we can restore with change.
For example, I have continued to teach workshops during the pandemic. And I learned several important pieces of information:
- My clients receive much better results now that I created remote workshops. We work together for a 90-120 minute timebox for ten days “in a row.” (Not always in a row, but close.) The people have more time to practice what I just taught. And they have many more questions. Those questions help them put what I teach into practice much faster than when I delivered in-person workshops.
- I much prefer the timeboxes for several days at a time. I get to reflect and decide what to do next.
- Cohort-based workshops work quite well.
I’m not sure I will return to onsite workshops. I have renewed and changed my work.
I have resumed some activities, although, with some changes.
Resume to Renew
I want to meet people—but not too many. I want to travel—but carefully. Notice these “but” words. Those words help me manage my risks.
For example, I finally had supper with my dad and my daughters and their families this past weekend. Not everyone has had all their vaccines. However, we’re all quite careful. Which meant we thought the relative risk was fairly low.
We restored our dinners, with change. To be honest, we made them new.
We were quite careful about how close we sat to each other. We did hug, but briefly. As everyone gets their vaccines, and as the virus decreases its general incidence in the population, we will probably relax more. Not yet.
I have not yet had a meal at a restaurant. It’s still too cold for me to eat outside and I’m not willing to eat inside. (The risks are too high for me, right now.) I’m not willing to “restore” restaurant dinners. And I am not going to any conference this year. Yes, it’s April as I write this and I might learn more this year. However, I have already committed time to clients and other projects.
I am not sure when I will repeat my previous activities.
Repeat, as in Reaffirm
I am happy to reaffirm certain activities. For example, I continue to write for various outlets. I’m also writing a ton.
In fact, this is the year I’m working on “balancing” my fiction words with my non-fiction words. No, the words are not equal yet! However, I’m learning. Which is part of my repeat and reaffirm.
I use retrospective questions to guide how I think.
Consider Retrospective Questions to Start Your Renewal
If you’re not sure how you might start to renew yourself, consider these retrospective questions. What do I want to:
- Keep from what I did before? (The idea of workshops and writing.)
- Remove from what I did before? (Reduce onsite workshops.)
- Add to what I did before? (Add in more fiction words. And more online workshops of many varieties.)
- Improve or change in some way, what I did before? (How I deliver workshops.)
These questions get to data, which I find helps me make better decisions.
That’s the question this week: How will you renew yourself?