5 Questions You Should Ask Yourself To Be Successful In 2015


Despite the cliche nature of New Years resolutions, the New Year really is the perfect time to evaluate, reflect, and set goals for yourself.

After all, it does signify a new chapter and new beginnings, so why not embrace the inspiring nature it brings? But before you go setting any goals for 2015, I want to take a moment with you to reflect on 2014, and I know just the way to do it.

Recently, Bronnie Ware, a palliative care worker and author of The Top 5 Regrets Of The Dying, gave us a glimpse of what those biggest regrets were. I thought it would be interesting and useful if funeral professionals looked at those 5 regrets and asked themselves if they are guilty of any of them.


Since you spend most of your days with the dead and dying, why not take a moment and learn something from them? Try the exercise below and you’ll be surprised by the insight and inspiration you’ll have for 2015. What are you waiting for? Let’s get started below:

#1: Did you have the courage to live a life true to yourself?

A long time ago I read a quote by e.e. cummings that read: “It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.” Through the years, that quote has really stuck with me. There’s a good chance that since you’re a funeral professional, you’re already half way there. After all, we know funeral service is a calling rather than a “job”. But what about outside of your role as a funeral director?

Don’t let your life be one dimensional; spend your time outside of work wisely. I know it’s not easy, but start by making goals for yourself and mapping out the small steps needed to get you there. For example, if you want to travel the world in 2015, make a plan to save a certain amount of money from every paycheck for your trip, and set aside a half hour a day to do research until you’ve come up with an itinerary you’re excited about. It’s okay to make your life passions a priority. And if you don’t have any, it’s time to find one. Don’t be afraid to let yourself be happy doing things that you love to do.

#2: Did you work too hard?

In this day and age, working 40 hours per week the standard, and often a low one in this profession. But you knew that when you chose this career, so let’s set aside the time element for a moment and think about how much of yourself you gave up in 2014. How often did you come home too tired to do anything but go to bed? How often did you find yourself so stressed that you didn’t have enough capacity in your brain to even think about anyone or anything else in your life? If you thought to yourself “too many”, then I’m here to tell you that you did, in fact, work too hard in 2014.

I know working in the funeral service industry requires a lot of emotional investment, but I want you to make a point to save some of yourself for your time after work. Leave that little bit of you that’s left to do something you enjoy, with people you care about — even if it’s for 30 minutes. It may not seem like a lot now, but when you look back next year, I can assure you that you’ll have far more memories and laughs with your family and friends than ever before.

#3: Did you have the courage to express your feelings?

In the latin dictionary, the word “courage” stems from the word “cor”, which means heart or innermost feelings. I like this latin translation because it defines courage as showing your true heart. This is one of the hardest things you can do in life, but it’s also the most important. Don’t be afraid to say “I love you” first. Don’t be afraid to voice your opinion. Don’t think for a second that someone doesn’t want to hear your true feelings, because they do. Expressing yourself freely is one of the most beautiful things you can do in this life. Don’t waste time or energy hiding your “cor.”

#4: Did you stay in touch with your friends?

As you get older, even with the world of Facebook and email, it becomes harder to stay in touch with your friends. But I’ve got a feeling that if you focused on doing the first three things we touched on, you might find yourself in a position where you’re welcoming both new and old friends into your life much more than you ever imagined. It’s crazy how great things work out when you make yourself a priority – and fostering relationships and friendships is no exception.

#5: Did you let yourself be happy?

It sounds silly, but letting yourself experience happiness is one of the most challenging things you can do. It’s mostly because we spend so much time chasing things we *think* will make us happy that we actually forget to sit back and be happy. In 2015, I challenge you to stop trying to be happy and, instead, just… be happy.

I hope this exercise gave you a new perspective on 2014, and inspiration for the year to come. Before you go, make sure you write in the comments below what your biggest goal is for 2015. Together, we can make 2015 the best year yet!

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