Chasing our dreams up lonely mountain roads

You’re climbing a vast, untracked mountain, going mostly by feel. Your focus is on curling your hand around that next hand-hole, or wincing over grazes and scrapes sustained in that last slip. The world shrinks to a very narrow perspective. If you spend all your time gawking at the view, you won’t make much progress and vertigo could tumble you right off.

Mid-year has arrived, that magical cusp between June and July that means a lot for some businesses and people and just another day for others. Parts of the world switch over with a new financial year and a new financial calendar.

This is a fantastic time to take a moment to catch your breath and pause to admire the view you’ve achieved through your creative world and projects. Most of us started the year with certain goals or intentions or expectations in mind.

Where do those sit now? How much progress have we made? Are we where we expected to be, halfway through the calendar year?

The mountain is a good analogy. When we are immersed in a project or fighting towards a goal it is very easy to remain focused on the next step, lacking the time or breath to take in the view. There are usually slips and falls where we lose skin and progress and are forced to pick ourselves up again.

Let’s take the opportunity of the half-way point in calendar year to reflect on the progress we have made so far. Do we have a better perspective from this angle? Is the path we plodding up the best angle? Would it be more strategic to modify the route we planned at the bottom of the mountain to factor in what we have learned in the climb so far?

Are we where we expected to be at this point? Have we had to work through unexpected upsets?

Mid-year is the perfect time to review any goals you have set, whether they sit in your health, mental health, relationship or creative spaces. It's pointless going through the same tired old motions if they don’t bring us closer to our goal. This is the chance to tweak or modify our plan, to draw on the new tools and learnings we have developed through bitter practice, to reflect on our experience of what works and what doesn’t.

I’m not suggesting we flip-flop all over the place or throw in the towel. I’m suggesting we take a moment to have a good hard look at what we have achieved, to take a moment to celebrate and value this, and cast a strategic eye to the path ahead.

What heights have you achieved in your goals this year, creative or otherwise? What new view or perspective do you have from this angle and how can this re-calibrate for success through the next chapter of your climb?

First published on my website on 2 July 2020

Nicole writes short stories and novel length speculative fiction and a weekly blog or