Themed Years

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In 2013 I got a journal with themed sections and it felt so much like it was all shaped around my life. I don’t have it anymore now but I loved the idea behind theming fragments of my life.

As we draw closer to a new year – 2020, the year of flying cars, I’ll implore you to consider theming your year. Perhaps over a resolution. I have nothing against resolutions and I think different things work for different people. However, I’ve found themes to be a lot more effective for me in the sense that I get to feel accomplished no matter how much achievement was gained within the theme.

For example, my entire year 2019 was themed “pursuing happiness”. I don’t know what the definition of happiness is for you, but I got a job when I was desperate for one, I got married to the most amazing woman in the world, I got my green card shortly after application with no hassle (which most people would consider odd), and soon I believe I will be getting an offer from one of the companies I applied to for a new role ✌🏾. I’m more happy now than I’ve ever been in my life. While I’m aware there’s still a lot to be achieved, my theme for the year was fulfilled and I found happiness based on my perception of it.

You may choose to not only theme your years but also theme every quarter in it. My theme for 2020 is BUILD which is vague and gives enough room for me to be accomplished even if all I did was build a set of lego bricks. Within 2020 I’ve themed the first quarter as RECOVERY, the second quarter as BALANCE, the third as THE GOOD FIGHT, and the fourth as BUILD AND GROW THE TREE. Each of those themes hold some meaning to me that I know can be fulfilled with my strength and God’s help.

Your themes can be words, phrases, or sentences. A beautiful feature of theming your year is that you can easily translate your resolutions into them, and encapsulating other goals within the chosen theme. For example, if you planned to lose some weight or eat healthier in the new year, you could create a theme titled RIGHT DECISIONS. This way you would try to remind yourself all the time if whatever you’re doing is the right decision towards your life’s ultimate goal. Eating unhealthy? Is this the right decision? Probably not. And remember that good things may not always be the right decision too. With a theme like RIGHT DECISIONS, you probably will be aiming towards moderation, so spending an overwhelming amount of time at the gym can be a right decision for some and not be for others.


It is totally fine to list a large number of goals as opposed to resolutions but it is not always easy for everyone to check items on a list of goals. I’ve also found goals to be generative. And what I mean by that is a goal can birth more goals in order to be accomplished, and you can either end up jumping to other goals with some incomplete or end up spending too much time on the nested/birthed elements of a top level goal that you don’t get to reach other top level goals.

This is why I think theming my years is the best decision I can make. I hope it works for you too!

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