Earlier this year, I wrote about the significance of the beginnings and endings of units of time. I was interested then in how easy it is to waste time when a unit is coming to an end. A year is one massive unit of time, and today, Christmas Day (I did notice), is very close to the end of this one. When you're talking about a year, it's very difficult to maintain a work schedule, anyway, because the end of that unit of time is heavy with holidays in Judeo-Christian cultures. Then you've got the ending issue coming on top of that. "Doing absolutely anything work-related during those lost hours at the end of a unit of time would be better than just blowing them off," I suggested back in the summer, long before I was giving any thought to merry making.
One work-related "anything" we can be doing at the end of any unit of time is assessing what we did. Kind of late in the day to be doing that, you say? But the end of a unit of time means another one should be starting soon. Assessing how did with your old work time should help determine what you're going to do with the next one.
The December issue of Yoga Journal included an article called Out With the Old by Sally Kempton. This being Yoga Journal, the article is a little long on things like "vibrant energy." The ritual of "recapitulation" that the article describes as "a process of recalling a charged event, bringing it to consciousness, feeling remorse if appropriate, and then letting it go" probably requires more intensity than most of us need when thinking back over how well we did with carrying out our work plans. I also don't think we necessarily need to be creating a list of negative thoughts so we can tear it up. However, Kempton talks about recalling "things we'd accomplished," "changes," and "conflict," all of which could be very useful to consider when working out the plan for the next unit of time.
What worked? What didn't work? How can we use what we did in the last unit of time in an upcoming unit? Next week begins a new year. Traditionally, people get very excited about the beginning of new years, making resolutions relating to what they're going to do over the next twelve months. They might do much better to make an actual plan. And an actual plan will come together better if you assess what you've done so you're building on the good and not repeating the bad.
Before next Tuesday, I'll try to do some sort of recapitulation on this past year, with a lot of focus on my time management study.