Reflecting on 2021 and Preparing for 2022

Each January, I like to reflect on what I accomplished in the last year and how those actions have prepared me for the upcoming year.

Reflecting on 2021

Last year was a very big year for me and my leadership training. I had more than enough work to keep me busy. I also wrote new courses on visualizations and storytelling for a couple of universities. I spoke virtually for several conferences and webinars during the year. The highlight was “Ten [Healthcare] Leadership Lessons from the Hamilton Musical” I presented for AMN Healthcare. It was a topic I had been contemplating for a few months and happy to have a chance to develop and present it. It was well received by their participants and has been presented to other healthcare and non-healthcare organizations throughout the year with great reviews.

I published my third book, “The Path to Elite Level Leadership.” It represents a refinement of many of the concepts from my previous, healthcare focused book and includes a lot of new content from my research and interviews. There is also a chapter on how we measure leadership growth using our proprietary Leadership Impact Assessment tool.

Due to COVID, my son spent his junior year of college with me. We watched a lot of movies when we weren’t working. Since he’s a screenwriting major, it was very interesting to see what he looks for in movies. While home, he also got me on a regular fitness routine. It started out as a joke about getting me in fighting shape in case we had to fight over toilet paper in the store. He’s been training in Muay Thai at school, so he taught me some of the basics. He would instruct me on Saturdays, and I would practice on my own during the week. I noticed that my workouts were more intense when he was coaching me which reinforced the reason leaders need to have a coach and/or a mentor throughout their careers. We all need someone to hold us accountable for what we agreed to work on.

A sunset from my balcony

Lastly, in 2021, I found a consistent reflection spot near my balcony door. Many of the sunsets you have seen in my wallpapers were taken from my balcony, so it has great views. Each morning I sit there for my morning prayers then reflect on my priorities for the day and the week. Reflection is a critical aspect of improving leadership and daily reflection is probably the most overlooked leadership step. My reflection time helped me to think of new approaches to situations and prioritize my time. I also learned that in addition to my passion for leadership, I also was passionate about my creative work, like fiction and non-fiction writing and creating marketing visuals.

Goals for 2022

This year, I will continue to be an advocate for improving leadership in all industries. I will continue to speak at conferences and grow the Elite Leadership Academy with our personalized, adaptable and measurable leadership growth curriculum. I also want to work with young people to help create the next generation of leaders.

Although I’m not planning on writing my next leadership book until 2023, I will continue to meet and interview new people for research for my next book. I completed my first children’s book at the end of 2021 and will work to complete the science fiction books I have already started. Hopefully, I’ll be able to find a publishing house that can handle all of my creativity this year.

I will take more time for myself. Beyond regular reflection, we need to know when to step away and relax. I had a very busy 4th quarter and expect that to continue in 2022. Therefore, I prioritized relaxation during most of the holiday break.

Thank you for your support during 2021 and I look forward to working with you throughout 2022. The quote in the image is one of my favorites for looking ahead. Please contact me if I can help you or your organization create better leaders.

J. Bryan Bennett

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