Image by Ken M

Recently, on Twitter, I noticed a lot of people discussing what their lives were like “10 years ago”.

I thought that was a very interesting subject for discussion. It offers us the opportunity to reflect and gain a greater appreciation of just how far we’ve come in a decade, often without even realising.

So I thought back to my own experiences. Where was I ten years ago? What was I doing? Who was I? And how much has changed since then?

10 Years Ago…

Well, 10 years ago my life looked like this:

  • studying a degree (and hating it…)
  • mucking around with trying some writing
  • mucking around with computers
  • playing tennis competitively in some of the highest divisions in the State (but, despite playing for years, I had never been part of a premiership winning team, nor had I won any district tournaments)
  • doing some menial casual paid work on the side
  • overall, feeling pretty depressed and unsatisfied with life

Between Then and Now

Since that time, I:

  • completed two degrees
  • wrote humour articles for my university student newspaper
  • worked as a sub-editor on an academic journal
  • became a producer, presenter and station manager of a community radio station
  • won an award for my services to community radio
  • created and produced a pilot for a TV show
  • pitched comedy shows to radio and television networks
  • made several short films (one went viral on the web)
  • worked as a qualified tennis coach
  • wrote a club newsletter for my tennis club
  • won my first team tennis premiership
  • won my first singles district tennis tournament
  • worked as a licensed private investigator
  • worked as a university teacher
  • taught myself how to play bridge, and now play bridge competitively
  • taught myself how to play hold ’em poker, and now play competitively (have won several live tournaments, and over $1,000 in prizes in the last 3 months)
  • taught myself photography
  • read a tonne of self-development and business books and articles
  • started my own business
  • started a business blog
  • started planning overseas travel for 2012
  • started developing a new comedy web series
  • started a self-development and lifestyle blog (the one you’re reading now!)

Now, the above list isn’t me “gloating” about my achievements. Nor does this list illustrate what my life looks like now (since I no longer do a lot of the above). In many ways, my life has become much simpler lately.

But having looked at what I’ve written above, my jaw dropped. I had no idea I had accomplished so much in the space of only 10 years.

Having said that, if it looks like I’ve achieved an impossible number of things, realise that the above breaks down to roughly 3 different achievements/activities per year. That’s definitely NOT unachievable. But over the years it DOES add up.

And that’s something we all need to remember. Consistent, small steps add up to big achievements over time.

Writing the above list has allowed me to gain a greater appreciation of that fact. It makes me realise that patience is important. Things take time.

So my question to you is, what did YOUR life look like 10 years ago? Who were you? Where were you, what were you doing? And how does that compare to your life today?

Chances are you have accomplished much more than you thought you had. Maybe it’s time to start giving yourself more credit for that.

And just imagine the things you’re capable of doing in the NEXT ten years…