Fanfare-filled farewell to 2014


In the last twelve months you have moved closer to the life you're meant to be living. That's what I heard from clients when I asked them what they are celebrating as this year draws to a close. There were books written, blog traffic increased, new income secured, babies born, and overall a renewed connection to what's really important. The choices they made inspired me -- all 365 days.

May their words encourage you to reminisce and celebrate your own milestones in 2014.

Starting with this post detailing Writer Stephanie Vessely's personal triumphs, Accomplishment: A New Definition.

One of my favorite passages: "I'm also learning to applaud myself. Because applause comes from within anyway. And I think my list calls for a round or two."

A generous round of applause (and a hearty WooHoo!) for Stephanie, and...

  •  Writer Kate Jordan who "realized a long-time dream of living abroad again" by settling her family in Switzerland. She also finished her memoir!

"Big Crazy Love is the story of my mother and me. We had a complicated, disastrous, yet ultimately miraculous relationship that ended in the finding of unconditional love in the most unlikely of places."

  • Heather Coleman who, "became a leader in every sense of the word." This year she took on the roles of Toastmasters' Club President, Daisy Girl Scout leader, and Mental Health Advocate through This Is My Brave, a show about people standing up to share their experiences with mental illness. In December, she also began a new job with Aquilent, supporting a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services client.

"I've found ways to rise above and exceed even my own expectations...All of the steps I've taken along the way have lead me to the exact place I need to be, and it feels very rewarding."

  • Writer first and Professor second, David Hicks, who, in addition to what he offers as his celebration, is working with a literary agent to shop his book, White Plains!

"I singlehandedly started up the new low-residency Mile-High MFA at Regis University, published two new short stories, and was interviewed by a prominent literary magazine. You can read more at my sparkling new website:"

  • Coach Eric Flemming who discovered, "That our pain can translate into a source of healing for more than just self. It can be a launchpad for change."

In light of the events in Ferguson, MO and elsewhere, his "Channeling the Fire series has created a space to build community, challenge each other, and move towards healing out of a terribly angry, painful place." I'm immensely proud of Eric's work.

  • James Thurston whose "greatest success this year has been how well prepared I feel to take next steps as I move into 2015."

"Because I had already given so much careful thought to how and where I want to use my unique set of skills and what kind of impact I want to have in the world, I am eagerly diving in to making a career shift. On to 2015 and new adventures!"

  • Coach Emilah Dawn DeToro, PCC who changed her marketing strategy and website in order to attract her ideal clients: "professional, midlife women who are committed to personal and spiritual growth, yet are feeling stuck inside and out."

"I also affirmed that financial stability was important to me and accepted a part-time position that provides that stability while also allowing me to continue building my coaching practice. Not surprisingly, the organization is going through a complete reorganization, and I am serving as a ballast and change agent in many of the same ways I serve my individual clients."

  • Cori Lewis who this year, "had some personal breakthroughs. My inner voice was buried for a long time. I was shushing her, and putting other people's needs and feelings ahead of my own."

And now? "I speak up for myself, identify what I want, and take action to make it happen." Go Cori!

  • Jennifer Gregory whose blog, The Runaway Mama, is funny, poignant, and incredibly readable.

"For me, 2014 was about having the confidence to submit my work to bigger publishing platforms, following my instinct to self-publish on my own terms, keeping up a daily writing practice, forgiving myself when I lost it, believing that rejection of my work was not a rejection of me, and learning to take pride in my achievements. I definitely like where I’m headed in 2015."

"At the end of 2014, I am celebrating all the things that would make my 17-year-old self giddy with excitement."

"Whenever I feel as though I haven't pushed hard enough, accomplished more, or achieved better, I remember who I was when I was 17 - and how proud and excited she would be of me. It helps me remember that even if I have insecurities, what I've done is actually amazing and worthy of recognition."

  • Sarah Bagley who realized her dream of being a Blogger with a capital B this year by taking A recovering perfectionist's guide to a B+ life to new heights. All of this while building a beautiful new home that her family moved into in time for Thanksgiving.

"It's been a challenging year, but all our hard work paid off."

  • MoneywiseMom Gina Linicum whose successful blog also experienced a happy dance-worthy upswing. It happened by creating, "a protocol by which I assess and choose freelance opportunities...I'm working in tune with my values and priorities."

"I increased my income while maintaining the same work hours (working smarter, not harder)," and Gina signed several large corporations!

  • Katy Craig who, "harnessing the power of intention was able to reinvent my life while staying put."

"By being open to possibilities and looking for magic everywhere," Katy seized opportunities to incorporate improvisation into her work with nonprofits, leadership and advising undergraduate students. AND, she wrote a book!

  • Margot Schulman, chef, health counselor and co-founder of Fareground, a pay-what-you-can pop up cafe in Beacon, NY, who celebrates,

"Incredibly increased confidence and trust in my self and my abilities. Much stronger belief in the power of setting intentions."

"I know now that I can make my dreams come true!"

What a lesson to learn this year -- for all of us.

Congratulations on your 2014. This New Year's Eve I will be kicking up my heels in your honor.