What’s IT all About?
April is about rebirth.
I have written about this before—that my “year” doesn’t really go by the calendar year in my profession and in life. Thinking about this, I break the year into several “mini” years or experiences, with different expectations for each cycle of my year. Most businesses have their year match the calendar year. Mine is somewhat different.
The start of my year really kicks off when the kids go back to school in late August. I start my preparation for the year around this time of year. I put into place systems and strategies for goals/milestones that I want to accomplish in the next year. Thus, this time of year is about setting the foundation. I have found that by doing this, I get a four-month jump on what others are doing and I actually start implementing new ideas and strategies either in December or on January 1st. I call this my Planning Stage.
Then comes January. Others are just starting to prepare and come up with new ideas for the next 12 months. Me? I’m done preparing. January is my Implementation Stage. We go full steam ahead starting in January.
April is the time of year that is the rebirth. I reevaluate what has worked during the first four months of the year and either continue down that path or pivot and find a new direction. The reason I choose April? Well, mentally, April is the month when flowers start to bloom, the weather is warmer, the kids play outdoors, and the days are longer. This time of year always brings about rebirth. The flowers are starting to bloom, the trees are starting to get color, the grass gets greener.
We were able to get mulch laid this weekend to start our “Fenway Park garden” (this is another Story for another Newsletter) ready. Our grass got its first cut on Thursday, and we got ready for Alex’s 7th birthday next weekend. April is the Rebirth Stage.
Then comes the end of the school year. The kids are around every day. Either we are doing camps, traveling, going to the pool, or just doing our daily trips in the summer. Yes, we are working, but not to the extent that we do the rest of the year. So from the end of school to the beginning of the next school year, this is the Relax and Recharge Stage.
As you can see, about four times a year, I can refocus, reevaluate, and change direction. Basically, I break my year into smaller chunks so that I can remain focused throughout the entire year.
Back to April…since I’m writing this newsletter in April for a May delivery.
Another reason why I say that April is the Rebirth Stage is that Alex and I share a birthday month, just two days apart. We have a lot going on in April as a family, so I can easily translate this time into the same for business.
An Emotional Week
Alex and I share a birthday week. He celebrated his 7th birthday as I turned 40.
We celebrated Alex’s 7th birthday on Friday, followed by his party on Saturday afternoon, where we had about 15 seven- to nine-year-old kids running around playing and celebrating Alex’s birthday.
This was then followed by going out with about 20 friends that Saturday night to celebrate my 40th birthday. It was an absolutely fabulous day. Friends since kindergarten, friends from high school and college, and my cousins came to hang out. It meant the world to me to have such great friends telling stories and sharing memories!!!
Then on Sunday, we did a family brunch to celebrate my actual birthday. My incredible wife, who always comes up with great ideas for birthdays, had a bunch of friends/family write a few paragraphs about a memory or an experience that we’ve shared together. This was my gift! And it was the best gift ever, because as I sit, perched at 40, I’m quickly realizing that life is about relationships and experiences. So for Susan to come up this idea was fitting. I started opening the letters to read in front of everyone yesterday, but I got about a sentence into the first one written by my cousin Libby, and started to get choked up.
Anthony had to read the memories for me. There were a few that had to be censored out and couldn’t be read to the “family” crowd. Haha.
So, I just want to say thank you from the bottom of my heart. I’m truly overwhelmed to have my tight friends and family (obviously), but I’m also thankful to have you—the calls, texts, and other messages that I received over the weekend—THANKS!!!
Time Really Does Fly
I cannot believe that my youngest, Alex, turned seven. He’s no longer a baby or a toddler. He’s turning into a young man. Gee (my mom, the name the boyz gave her) and the Verdi Boyz went out to buy shoes for the spring, and Anthony (who will surpass my mom in height within the next year) now wears a 7 ½ shoe, and Alex a 3 ½ . When did they go from my babies who I’d stay up with all night doing what parents do to two young men???
My grandmother, Nama, told me years ago that each year goes by faster and faster the older you get. And MAN is that SO true. The days and weeks run together. The months and years run together the older you get. What happened a year ago seems like about a month ago.
Do you agree? The older you get, the faster the years pass?
When I was younger, I always was looking ahead. When I was in elementary school, I couldn’t wait till middle school because I thought it would be so cool. Then, in those middle and high school days, I was excited for college because of the freedom that college would provide. In college (although it was a BLAST), I was looking ahead to getting a job, getting married, and having kids. I was always looking to and anticipating the next phase of life, always wanting more, always anticipating what was next.
Really, for the last five or six years (pretty much after I didn’t have to stay up with Anthony all night and could sleep for a few hours at a time), I’ve wanted to FREEZE this phase of life. I’m no longer looking ahead. I’m happy with this phase of life. It’s fun. Yeah, it’s tough, but it’s incredible. My mom always said, “One day, you’ll understand.” She used this phrase for pretty much everything when she would describe being a parent.
I believe that she meant that I wouldn’t truly understand until I was a parent myself.
The Boyz. This age. It’s SOOOO much fun.
Each day is a new adventure. Yeah, there are some not-so-great moments, but all-in-all this is a really fun and rewarding phase of life that I wish we could capture and freeze. I know this isn’t true and that the older I get, the more I realize that the only certainty in life is that there will be change.
If you don’t like today, just wait. It’ll change. If you’re thrilled with today, ENJOY it because it’ll change, too.
So, this month’s takeaway—live in the present day! Because tomorrow will bring change, maybe for the better, maybe for the worse. Or maybe just somehow different. Enjoy each phase to the MAX!!!
Just as there are cycles and seasons to life, there are cycles and seasons to business. Each phase is enjoyable, and when you can step back and take a broader view of what is happening, the more thankful you become.
Looking back on the ledge of 40, I really think that there are two things in life that matter. Firstly, it’s the people whom you touch, your friends. Each and every one is SPECIAL and I cherish you. I’m blessed to have wonderful friends like you.
Secondly, it’s the impact that you make on the lives of others. This one, I’m working on.
Thanks for being you…I appreciate you!
Have a great week, my friend!!!