As last year came to a close, like every year, I started to reflect on what I had achieved.
For me, every year tends to bring about some change, but as I reflected on 2018, nothing stood out as a significant achievement for the year.
When we review our lives, a lot of us look to the moments when we have a breakthrough or a massive change in some way. Something that takes us to the next level in our business or personal life.
What I realized from the past year is that it was a year of small achievements that have stacked up. None of them was groundbreaking within itself, but all of them added to my overall success, and the foundation of my character.
2018 for me was a year of gaining ground.
I actually didn’t achieve the specific goals I set for myself. But, for some reason, I don’t feel like this was a failure.
What I can see now is that improvements are more important than achievements. Achievements feel good, they look good to the world, but in some ways they prove to be hollow. Improvements on the other hand are what stay with us, they help us to rise to a higher level and to eventually acheive everything we want.
Through my efforts last year, I began a lot of new things in my life, met amazing people, and improved my skills. Despite no massive achievements, I made big improvements, I still gained a lot of ground.
Some years are going to be years of progress. There will be years of making small, unimpressive gains in either character or circumstances. These improvements matter more than achievements.
Not everything we do can be groundbreaking, sometimes it is just normal. But even in the ‘normal’, there is a lot of change happening under the surface.
The next time I have a breakthrough or a big success, I am going to remember that years like 2018 are what make that possible. The grind, the consistency, the risks that I keep taking. All of them start to compound and add up over time.
This is the path to the success we seek.
This is what it means to be gaining ground.