During the month of September we are focusing on the Thoughts on ‘This Time Next Year’ and what it means to each of us. Today I would love to introduce my first guest for the month, Shelley Merchant from A Woman in Her Prime.
You can find the details for Shelley’s website and social media links at the end of the post and I would encourage you to pop over and visit her. I’ve know Shelley for some time and her website is all about providing ‘solutions and encouragement for busy woman’. To quote Shelley:
It’s not about age. You can be a woman in your prime whatever your age and stage. Being a woman in your prime is about realizing that you have one life and embracing the chaotic, mish-mash, ever-changing miracle that it is while also working to improve and redefine yourself in each area.
Today Shelley will share her thoughts on what the phrase ‘This Time Next Year’ means to her and discusses her 9 Dreams for the Future.
Thoughts on ‘This Time Next Year’ with Guest – Shelley Merchant
When Sue asked me to do this guest post and told me her theme, I immediately started thinking about my goals for the coming year. What do I want to achieve? Where do I want to be in the different areas of my life? What do I want my life to look like a year from now?
Piece of cake, I thought. After all, I’m a compulsive planner and master goal setter. I know how to set SMART goals and break them down. I’ve even got a list of one-year, five-year, and ten-year goals so writing about this topic should be super easy.
And then, of course, I started thinking (which is often a dangerous thing). I could bore readers with a list of my personal goals, but who would care? I could discuss the process of goal setting, but a quick search of Google would suffice for anyone who needed that information. So I started thinking instead about what I REALLY want to see happen by this time next year – and I realized that my personal, specific goals, aren’t that important in the grand scheme of things.
Instead, the things I’d really like to see this time next year aren’t so much personal as they are global. Like every other mother, I worry about the world my children, and possibly grandchildren, will live out their lives in. I’m concerned because the future I see before them looks bleaker than the one handed to me. When I envision life this time next year, it’s not my future I care most about, but that of my children.
When I close my eyes, here’s what I envision for my kids, and yours.
9 Dreams for the Future
The World I’d Like To See
I want my children to inherit a future in which:
- We’re kinder to each other. Where civility, manners, and polite conduct are the norm.
- We’re accepting of the differences between us. Where differences aren’t viewed as strange or wrong.
- We’re able to disagree without resorting to name-calling, insults, and violence, and where we can work through disagreements to reach compromise solutions beneficial for all.
- We pursue goals that are good for every member of the human race, not just those at the top of the economic ladder.
- We’re closer to curing and preventing disease, ending poverty, and eliminating hunger.
- Education is a valuable commodity that is equally available to all who wish to pursue it.
- We don’t feel threatened by those who believe differently than we do and where don’t try to coerce others to adopt our beliefs and attitudes.
- We respect the wisdom of our elders while appreciating the innovation of the young.
- We totally, completely, and unconditionally accept ourselves and then extend the kindness to others.
I’m not naive enough to think that all this will happen in a year. The problems and issues in the world are immense and will take time. Future generations, however, are depending on us to be problem solvers. We can’t afford to abdicate our responsibilities and assume that someone else will clean up the mess.
Big problems will require big solutions. We’ll all be forced to work through some very controversial issues and confront our assumptions, stereotypes, and biases. It won’t be easy and it won’t be quick. But I do know this: If we don’t start solving our problems now, they’ll only get worse. And that is a future I can’t imagine.
Shelly is a former school teacher and administrator whose current goal is to help busy women improve their lives while juggling multiple demands on their time.
If you want any of the Miss America answers (or Miss World, in this case) – I live in a very small town in Texas, have three young adult children, love disaster movies, and Vanilla Coke Zero (and Bruce Willis).