Ask the Readers: What Lessons Have You Learned in 2010?

2009 feels like only a few months ago, but we have reached the end of 2010. It’s quick, isn’t it?

This time of the year is always good to reflect on our lives. What have you done well this year? What should you improve? I’m sure you’ve learned something. So I’d like to ask you:

What lessons have you learned in 2010?

Please share your answer in the comments. I wish you a great 2011!

Photo by tibchris


  1. Passion is king. Only when you breathe it in can the transformation begin.

    • I learned the hard way that self belief and confidence are key in success. this was valuable. On the other hand I also learned that passing an exam etc to enter a specific career is not success ( as it may appear) if this leads us on to the wrong path. It is better to fail and coose again, Gratitude to the Universe for stopping me going the wrong way !

  2. What I’ve learned during this year is: if you want to do smth, you must do it immediately, without any I’ll-do-it-in-five-minutes excuses.

  3. Living and enjoying the present. The beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder. Really this lifeoptimizer helped me to have an enthu for my day today life.

    Success is near if you are not living in the past. Procrastination is the art of keeping up with yesterday.

    Cheers and Enjoy the new year.

    God Bless.

    • Monique Avakian
      Monique Avakian

      “Success is near if you are not living in the past.” That is very helpful to me! Thanks!

  4. I got married, started a blog, bought a business and helped my wife start a business all in 2010. So a lot of change, and I learned a WHOLE lot in the process.

    I used to think I had to have the perfect timing or the perfect reason to do things. What I’ve learned in 2010 is to just go ahead and get started – and see where it takes you!

  5. Focus on your exceptional talents and what makes you happy. Delegating the rest keeps you from burning out and lets you enjoy the journey.

  6. I learned many things.

    -Just because you were great before doesn’t mean you can’t be great again. If you start to fail in your field of excellence don’t believe you’ll never be great in it again, believe you can surpass what you’ve done before and do it.

    -Your brain needs a workout just like the rest of your body does. If you lift weights your muscles will get stronger and if you don’t they’ll become weak. If you read, listen to new music and try different things your brain will become wiser. If you sit all day in front of the TV or computer it will become weak. But just like muscles, if you work your brain excessively it will not grow and you will be mentally fatigued. Remember to take rest days, just like working out.

    -Think about what matters and keep the long term goal in mind. The best decisions won’t always be the ones that will make you happy instantly. Delaying gratification is the key to success.

    -Good food makes you feel good and bad food makes you feel bad. Eating healthy food makes you feel smarter and more energetic.

    -The clock is ticking. Don’t waste your life. Find something you believe in, a cause you want to support and persist until your dreams come true.

  7. I’ve learnt a lot this year. But the key points are 1. Build a business around your passion 2. Leadership is all about influence 3. Individual don’t win, team do. 4. To acheive financial freedom, you must know the difference between asset and liability. Thanks so much!

  8. I have learned to take myself less seriously. This lesson has been the springboard for increased awareness. If I stop obsessing over what I want to achieve and simply take action; I move forward with more ease and speed than when I obsess over making every move perfectly.

    I have learned to take time and enjoy life. This lesson has taught me to be thankful for all the wonderful things that God has given me. Goals and accomplishments are important, but if I am not able to bask in the wealth of what I already have, my efforts will always prove fruitless.

    • Chad, I like your post. I’m a small business owner and a perfectionist and sometimes find that I obsess over having all of my ducks in a perfect line before taking action. Your post reminds me that that it’s ok to mess up every now and again as long as I’m moving forward and learning from my mistakes. Also to appreciate all of the blessings that I have and to enjoy life. What is success if there is no joy?

  9. Waht I have learned is the old paradigms are quickly obsolete. The keys are to: find what works for you now, be very aware that change can come at any moment- so plan for contingencies and finally be mindful of yourself and others because while you have your own perspective they too are entitled to theirs. We all live in our own realities ;it is where these realities intersect that we learn to understand the multiple realities that make up our universe.So just be careful work smart as well hard and you will be ok

  10. i learnt the most valuable lesson in my life. “The never changing power of mind”. Yes waiting patiently to face the 2011 and make my life so beautiful using my power of mind!!
    All the best for all!!

  11. I realized that I had spent too much of my life trying to fit in and be normal. Once I accepted myself for who I am and what I am then all the troubles disappeared. I totally embrace myself and now live my life.
    Why Be Normal when Being Yourself is More Fun.

    Second item I learned – never ever plan things. Be prepared for opportunities, but never plan.


    • Monique Avakian
      Monique Avakian

      Why be normal? is a phrase I’ve always loved and now you have extended it and it better with Why be normal when being yourself is more fun–great! thanks

  12. Trust no one (especially an employer) when you’re trying to get your business off the ground and working a job at the same time.Nobody cares about your business like you do,and don’t let your employer know what you’re doing until you’ve gotten your first profits in the door. Jealousy and envy can really hurt when you’re close to being successful. Like crabs in a barrel, everyone wants you to be as miserable as they are. Follow your dream,just don’t let anyone know about until you’ve got it up and running.

    • Nurredin

      Wise advice from your learning points.
      But a word of caution.
      Many employers have inserted no-competion and/or exclusivity clasues into their employment contracts.
      These may not be visible to you as often the terms of employment are merely referred to in the employee agreement which you are obliged to sign.

      Such a no-competion clause may restrict you from undertaking specific types of activity in your own enterprise and may even allow the employer to penalize you if you are caught working for others (including your own business) on activities which employer has restricted. This may apply only to normal working hours although many employers extend this clause to encompass all activities at any time!

      An exclusivity clause essentially eliminates you from working for, deploying your skills or sharing information with anyone other than your employer. Togethhr with the no-competion clause it basially enslaves you to the employer. If you are caught providing any services to others (often the clause includes paid and unpaid services) then employer may penalize you.

    • that is just true what you said about everyone want’s you to be miserable…it’s true because once they have taken advantage of the information you provided them with you become the victim of their victory!
      so it’s so important to keep that success away from others eyes…never trust anyone…

  13. Monique Avakian
    Monique Avakian

    As of yesterday, I learned that you can let go of outmoded ways of being. Certain habits of mind and behavior that I invented to protect myself 35 or 40 years ago are no longer relevant or useful and, in fact, have become very destructive! It is liberating to delve into the length of your life and as an aging person learn how to let go. It is extremely difficult, but is really the most fruitful kind risk-taking, especially if you are female and over 40. As of yesterday, I am no longer flirting with turning down the even more destructive path of regret. Letting go is really the first step toward embracing the second half of your life! Best to all you seekers and thank you for your helpful thoughts here. Keep your head up and your eyes forward.

  14. Yes! I learned a lot this year, with the help of my friends motivation, I started looking everything in a positive way, and it works too.I started reading lot of positive, inspirational articles which gave me lot of confidence.Also everyone in this world is trying and working to acheive their goals, to acheive that first think in a positive way, secondly give your 100% percent effort.Success will be in your hands.Also the important thing in life is to have fun,joy and SMILE…

  15. I have learned that just because things don’t turn out the way you want them to, that doesn’t mean that God doesn’t love or care about you; keep on keeping on. When you feel hopeless and there is nothing good out there, do something kind for someone else and you will be blessed in return. Be patient with yourself and others, we are all a work in progress.

  16. i think the past year have been pretty similar to the one before which was 2009 but still though i have learned a lot from the past year..
    i learned to be patient, strong, i saw the real people i know and i knew the persons they were
    even though it was striking it was good to know now because knowing it later will be much harder..
    i learned to listen more, respect others opinion and talk only the necessary…
    the things i wish would happen in this coming year is for me to find my inner peace, to believe more in myself and push my self more to accomplish the great things i have in mind and maybe make a change in my life or somebody’s life…a positive one of course 🙂

  17. I saw the subject on your Website on 28th Dec 2010. Since then I started to recall the episodes during this year in my life which may be the part of Lesson learned. Last two days I came across various episode which can be the part of Lesson Learned but I opted one of the best lesson learned from this year episodes that is “Don’t Make Your Self Appraisal”
    In office or home some time we work very hard to achieve the work and on same time most of us decide some sort of expectation of appraisal from others. When we will not get the same from other then we will very de-motivated and annoyed from the person from which we expected the appraisal. This is most frustrating cases in daily life. But on the other if you just work hard and feed in your mind that your work is good and you are working for shaping your skills and not for other appraisal then your day and nights are very light.

  18. I will share one positive and one negative lesson I have learned during the past year.
    Bing a management consultant I acquire assignments to evaluate the sustainability bottlenecks of SME’s as well as larger companies, so I would say my learning points are balanced and reliable.

    NUMBER #1
    The statistics are scary about the success rate of new enterprises and the chances for their sustainability. Absolute failure figures are never published and the Chambers of Commerce and Minsitries of Idustry politically side-step the hard numbers. Usually you get a relative figure publicised such as “The incremental rate of change of failed business continued to drop this year…. blah blah blah.”
    The above link frames the general European SME situation but is worded rather politically correctly and is quite low on actual statistics and specifics to be of any use.
    But believe me when I say that AT LEAST 70% of SME’s collapse and are liquidated, are just abondoned or enter into formal bankruptcy within their first 3 to 5 years.
    And much like the housing market the banks and other financial services institutions, who have funded such enterprises, have now become overburdened with failed SME businesses, struggle to save, sell-off or re-start them.
    Though paradoxically they all artificially keep the acquisiton values of such failed enterprises so high that new entrepreneurs opt to start a complete new business afresh.
    My advice to such entrpreneurs is to negotiate and bargain them to the wall to get a much more favourable deal from a re-start or an acquisition rather than starting a totally new business.
    And these money-men will succumb eventually so do not hesitate one second to threaten to take you business plan elsewhere. They get a commission for opening up new enterprises but no credits for a restart or acquisition of their past failed (ad)ventures.

    NUMBER #2
    I embarked in 2005 on a personal 5 year plan to eliminate all of my debt, to treble my liquidity and savings and to ensure maximum work mobility and employability.
    I am pleased to announce that I have completed this 5 year plan succesfully.
    I have no mortgage and my home is 100% my ownership including al its inventory.
    I have cashed-in all those phoney and bogus “investment and retirement/pension plans” which we were all lead in the 1990’s to believe would ensure we sustained our personal wealth. BULLS###!
    I have not gained one penny on any of them but have just about recouped all my initial inlays.
    My savings and bank balance is positive even though I only accrue 1.5% yearly interest on the amount. I have spread the amount over several banks both at home and abroad. They only guarantee depsoits up to US$ 75,000 in any event so the saying that “Your money in the Bank is as safe as houses” has taken on a new meaning for me.
    I work on contract basis only as this is more flexible and convenient for me than being tied-up working for an employer as staff, since all those pension plan contributions and intricate secondary and tertiary reward mechanisms are just a complete waste of effort, time and money.
    Even those much touted ESOPS’s will eventually evolve (like pension plans) into company liabilities and be restrictive for employees who want to cash-in and move-on.


  19. Thanks for sharing everyone. I love to learn from all of you. Happy New Year!

  20. I have learned that happiness is a very fragile thing.

  21. I learnt more about relationships and friendships, and learnt more about myself through the process, I’m hoping the New Year will bring me a better understanding of how to improve my relations with others and how to let love and kindness flow freely : )

    • that’s great sarika i hope i will be having some of that this year and learn more about my self and life…

      since last year was a very bad year for me 🙁

      thank you v. much …hope you enjoy this year to the ultimate 🙂

  22. Hi Donald.

    2010 taught me that you have to reach for what you want with vigor. Any form of waiting for it to arrive is lost time.

    Looking forward to Life Optimizer in 2011.

  23. Wow, great question to ask. What have I learned in 2010? So much, but one thing stands out for me:

    If you want to achieve the pot of gold, then you need to walk to the end of the rainbow.

    Great place you got here, I’ll be checking back regularly. Take care 🙂

  24. I have learned that the most powerful entity in this world is Time. Use it well and it is your ally, waste it and it destroys you.

  25. Hi Donald,

    There are many lessons that I learned, the most one is that dreams and goals do come true 🙂 Thanks for sharing

  26. I have learned that I DO have a passion; I did use my passion to help many without realizing it; I am good at what I am passionate about; companies are more than willing to pay me for what I am good at as they get value that tremendously exceeds monetary price.

    2010 was truly remarkable for me and I hope it was the same for you.

    To Your Success in 2011 and Beyond!

  27. 2.5 years ago, I began my career in a big company. Thanks to my hardworking parents to support my sister and I when we were college students. They committed all their energy and money to us. In 2010, my sis and I worked together to make my parents free. Finally they don’t have to work that hard. Really a big progress.

    How time flies! In this Rabbit Year, I got a new idea to develop my career. Maybe it needs a long time to fulfill it. But I believe in perseverance.

  28. i learn time is the best teacher so use u r time in right way

  29. 2010 was the beginning of my transformation ,beginning of my new life ,new thinking (positive thinking), i learned to throw back my unhappy events and think of it positively , i had no self confidence but i learned that i deserve one ,it’s like i knew more about myself and learned to appreciate myself. I learned to not take any words as a fact because that can limit my thoughts.

    This year im aiming to improve my relations with others,to be more social and become the person i was or even better.Also to improve myself at some things i see interesting.

  30. I learned that when you’ve been doing something for 12 years and you’re feeling burned out or like you’ve lost your touch, you can find your passion again. You have to remember what made you love your work in the first place and find that love again. Set new aggressive goals and change your “self talk”. If you start saying things like: “I’m excited about this project” OR “this is going to be a great year” OR “I love my work”, then you will start to think that way. If you say things like: “I’m burned out” OR “I can’t stand… (fill in the blank)” you will certainly see the negative effects. If you learn to love what you do, you will be successful at it!

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