An annual review is a great way of reflecting on the year gone by to see what worked so you can do more and what didn’t work so you can adjust and change.
I have been carrying out an annual review for a few years and started publishing it on my blog last year.
I find it helps me focus more which enables me to plan more and in turn enables me to achieve more so I can live the life I love.
An annual review is also hugely helpful when setting goals for the coming year.
My goals for 2014 included most of those from 2013 and some more new ones – spend more time with my family and friends, give more to charity, exercise more, read more books, learn more, work full time in a Lean/Continuous Improvement role, continue to exhibit my Travel Photography Exhibition in airports, spend less, meditate more, have more of a presence on and learn more about social media/internet marketing, meet people/authors whom I admire and who inspire me, attend amazing workshops.
Basically do everything that adds to my happiness and wellbeing and remove everything from my life that doesn’t!!!
Some goals I met surprisingly well and some I did not, my goals like life itself are a work in progress!!!!
One of the goals I did surprisingly well on was to work full time in a Lean/Continuous Improvement role.
As well as Travel Photography I have a huge passion for Lean and Continuous Improvement which I have been learning over the past few years through my full time role as an Analytical Chemist. My passion for Lean has slowly taken over my love of Analytical Chemistry and so it was time to change role.
On 13th October 2014 I started my new and current job as Continuous Improvement Manager, now I do Lean all day every day which is blissful…..I’m currently building a website where I will share my thoughts and learnings and will let you know when it is ready to launch. #ILOVELEAN
With this career change came a move home to my home County of Limerick where I am closer to family, friends and living with the love of my life Mike. There are no words to describe how grateful I am for all of these blessings.
On returning from Malaysia in February, my 40th birthday was just around the corner and I took the opportunity to celebrate my 40 years by raising money for the Irish Heart Foundation, a charity I owe alot to and that is very close to my heart (excuse the pun).
Thanks to my friends and family, we raised over €400 for the IHF.
Thanks also to all my loved ones for an amazing party, I look forward to the next 40+ years with your support and love.
Special thanks to Elaine Henebry for my gorgeous poster below
February also saw the end of my Travel Photography exhibition in Shannon Airport.
I am so grateful to Shannon Airport especially Dorothy Quinn for allowing to to exhibit my work in such an amazing space for such a long time. As always big thanks also to Tony from RightBrain Fine Art printing studio – Cork City, Donie and Denis in Thomas Street Framing gallery – Limerick City and Barbara in Barbara Hubert Bookbindery – Cork City
So many people left comments in my guestbook that I required 2 guestbooks!!!
The comments left were amazing and so inspirational to me as a Travel Photographer, I collated my favourite ones into an album that can be seen here in Facebook.
From my exhibition in Shannon Airport I am delighted to say I made my first sales!!!
These sales were made through e-mail with customers and also which was the most exciting of all through my website which is my very first online sale!!!! I cannot tell you how exciting this is and not for monetary reasons but because it shows hard work, perseverance and dedication does eventually pay off.
It was also very exciting that the person who made my first online sale possible was a person I have immense respect for and who was also responsible for the majority of my formal education, the past principle of my secondary school – synchronicity or The Universe working it’s magic, I like to think it’s a bit of both!!!!
As this was a realisation of one of my dreams, to sell my Travel Photography Fine Art prints online I wrote a blog post on it called ‘Dreams’.
I was honoured and humbled to be recognised by our President Michael D. Higgins for my contribution to ‘The Gathering 2013’ through my Travel Photography Exhibitions.
In August, my Travel Photography exhibition moved to George Best Belfast City Airport where it can currently be seen.
Again I am grateful to George Best Belfast City Airport especially Louise Mc Cutcheon and Paula Johnson for allowing to to exhibit my work in such an amazing space for looking after my exhibition so well.
If you are flying through George Best Belfast City Airport, please stop by and leave a comment in my guestbook, I always love to hear from fellow travellers. George Best Belfast City Airport wrote this great blog post on our exhibition.
Following that I wrote a post outlining exactly what it takes to ‘Create a Travel Photography Exhibition’
2014 saw me become an author on Amazon – yes you read correctly – an author on Amazon!!!
I published 5 of my Travel Photography books on Amazon. These include ‘The Photographer’s Guide to Cuba, India, Bhutan, New York and Vietnam.
2014 was a year of immense learning for me, learning about myself, learning about what I want from life and learning about what interests me. As well as a passion for Travel, Photography and Lean methodology I have a huge interest in social media and internet marketing.
I find social media fascinating and the learning curve with social media is always steep as it changes every minute of every day. There is always something new to discover, something new to trial. It has made what used to be a very large world into a very small world with communication of and sharing information easier than ever before.
This year I learned so much about social media and internet marketing, however I am only scratching the surface as there is so much to learn and social media is ever changing and evolving.
Anyone who follows me on social media will know I love quotes, – travel quotes, positivity quotes, inspirational quotes, quotes of all kinds!
This year I created quotes images using different internet tools and scheduled these quotes to my social media sites using Hootsuite which is a social media management tool that enables you to do so much more in much less time.
I started with some basic admin work and it was one of the best things I have done this year and will continue to outsource next year which frees me up to do more creative work.
One of my goals for 2014 was to read more books as I love reading and find books a great source of learning and relaxation. This is one of my goals that went extremely well. Reading 10 books in a year took a conscious effort on my part of which I will build on next year. Books I enjoyed this year include
As busy as 2014, I still found some time for one of my greatest loves, travel…..
This year my travels brought me to Malaysia, Paris, Lanzerote and Belfast among many other cities and destinations in Ireland.
In Malaysia Mike and I travelled to Kuala Lumpar, the Cameron Highlands and the island of Penang and had an amazing time. Malaysia is as diverse as it is beautiful and I highly recommend it as a place to put on your ‘to visit’ list!
Mike and I take a selfie while trekking through the Cameron Highlands, Malaysia
Another selfie while discovering Paris in the Summer, the top of the Eiffel Tower is still very cold!!!!
My goals for 2015 will be about my loves in life, my boyfriend, my family, my friends and creating more time (using Lean) to live the life I love.
I hope you are setting your goals and plans for 2015 and that 2015 is your best year yet.
A sincere THANK YOU to everyone who has shared this journey with me, each and every one of you have a made a positive difference to my life.
x x x
How did your 2014 go?
Did you set out a plan with goals at the beginning of the year?
Did you reach your goals?
What did you learn from reaching/not reaching your goals?