Happy New Year folks. Last Sunday the preacher in church gave us a short Greek lesson. He told us the word – New, has two meanings in the Greek language. Neos means new but the same. Kainos means new but different. I prefer my new year to be different from last year. Good things happened last year but better (or gooder as my baby shark once said) things will happen this year. A replay of last year will be like repeating a class, boring. May this new year be different for you folks in more ways than one so Happy Gooder (Kainos) year hehe.

I enjoyed my personal AGM during the Christmas break. It was both introspective and forward-looking. I for the first time filled out one of those year compass booklets that help you reflect on the year that’s ending and then picture the year that’s loading. Curious to see the outcome at the end of this year. We often forget to look back and see the ground we’ve covered at the end of the year. Being away from our usual busy operating environment helps us realize that we have done more and maybe even made more than we thought.

For the last few years, I have sought a word for the year as a lighthouse to guide me through the year. Of course, a life quake can derail us sometimes as was the case in 2021 when my dad passed away. I just floated through the rest of that year. And that too is allowed, folks. Our word for the year is meant to serve us and not the other way around.

I’ve been thinking of what I’d want this year to look like and what word would be fit to label it. 2024 is different because it is also the year I begin my fifth decade. Yaani just like that my furious 40s are coming to an end. They have been full of character development, to say the least. I hope I paid attention in class as I wouldn’t want to repeat any of the midlife coursework.  So the word I settled on for this year needed some long thinking because it could also be the word for the decade.

Last year my word was, decisive. I feel I was decisive on some tasks and blunt on others. Overall I scored above average I think. My word for 2024 is Maximize. I want to maximize my gift for impact and income. My 40s took me through deep trenches of reflection that forced me to question my existence. Why am I here? Who am I? What do I have and what will I do with it? How do I want to live the rest of my life? What will I be remembered for? Fundamental life questions that we all have to consider if we are to give our lives meaning. Warning to those getting into this phase. Approach with caution for it tends to get messy but is well worth the struggle.

Some serious archaeology has gone on that has led to discovering treasure buried deep within my core. Part of the treasure I discovered was clarity on my gift, speaking. The halftime program then unearthed some more loot in helping me craft a personal mission statement; To use my speaking and influence to positively impact people’s lives and communities. That is what I want to do for the rest of my life now that I’m clear about my gift and purpose. It’s the rent I’m paying for the space I occupy on Earth.

Our talents, interests, and passions are God’s gifts to us. What we do with them is our gift back to God. Now that we are in a new year (and soon a new decade for me), I feel it’s time to gift God back after sharpening his gifts over the last decade. And hence my word for the year. I want and plan to maximize it fully through coaching, board leadership, speaking / moderation, and of course travel with my nature photography hobby too.

Folks we cannot give what we don’t have and I know many struggle with that. But could it be a case of trying to fit square pegs in round holes? We are all uniquely gifted and we can only maximize our gift once we identify it and know where and how to use it. And that only happens after a lot of internal work. The better we know ourselves the clearer we see our assignment and where to unleash our superpower.

And for that inner work, there is no shortcut. It will often feel like watching a thriller movie in slow motion with you as the main actor but if we kazana (persevere) it will have a happy ending. I feel almost cooked now and ready to be served to my mission this year and over the next ten. But I remain aware that we never really arrive and when we do then we start regressing.

Folks if you have been carrying that smoldering discontent through 2023, then maybe it’s time you stopped smelling like smoke and began fanning the flames of your life. The self-appraisal, if done well will lead you closer to your unique assignment and that’s where you will begin living life in maximize mode. I’d highly recommend the halftime program for that process. It was like a pin that guided me to the location that was my sweet spot. There is still work to be done but it’s more directed, intentional, and purposeful. And the best part is you have a coach to walk with you.

May you maximise the year ahead and may as many of us land on our sweet spots this year.

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5 thoughts on “Maximize.”

  1. Mike Eldon says:

    I am fully confident that you will indeed maximise, Lucas.

  2. Linda Gitau says:

    Wholesome truth, especially the part about knowing yourself making you see your life mission clearly. Thanks my brother, great words and great way to start the new year.

  3. Angie says:

    A fantastic way to start the year for us Lucas thank you!

  4. David Kimani says:

    Amen to that Lucas. A blessed new and different, mazimized and maximizing year and new decade to you.

  5. Penny says:

    So good Lucas! Thank you for being a North star through your writing / speaking when I have felt as though I am stumbling in the dark to find purpose!

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