Busy, really busy, but can't for the life of you feel like you've accomplished anything?
Hard on yourself?
If so, The Remarkable Year is for you.
I’m a recovering to-do listaholic, and I’m very optimistic in the early hours of Monday mornings.
My to-do lists used to be epic.
I’d roll over all the unfinished to-dos from the week before (of which there were many!), and I’d add to them:
Run ten miles!I didn’t run last week, why do I think I can do ten miles this week?
Write 10,000 words! Last week, I wrote 5,000 words. Maybe I can double it.
Then, inevitably, the week would end, my workout clothes would still be clean from last week’s laundry, and my writing would be… undone.
I was frustrated.
How am I getting to the end of the week without actually accomplishing anything?
The next week, I thought I’d look at the problem in a different way. I took a blank piece of paper, and every time I did something, I’d write it down.
I grouped things together, and by the end of the week, I loved what I saw.
I was doing things!
The problem wasn’t my ambition; the problem was my to-do list!
I kept it up for a few weeks and realized I was onto something.
What if I could create a calendar/planner/goal tracker that kept track of the “to-done list” for the entire year? What if I could record my wins and accomplishments each week? That would motivate me to keep going.
That’s how The Remarkable Year was born.
Instead of letting your calendar control you, you control your calendar.
By simply writing things down. Seriously. Set goals in a variety of categories, and at the end of the week, write down the things you did -- not the things you wanted to do! -- every week.
See Your Progress Throughout the Year
Did you go out to an amazing restaurant or make something awesome at home? That's what the Best Meals section is for. Are you tracking your steps? Note how many times you hit 10,000 this week. Did you have a great conversation with a loved one? Write about what you discussed.
Those things are so easy to forget with the passage of time but so important to remember.
Capture the wins, big and small.
The Remarkable Year helps you prove to yourself that you are moving forward. You're doing remarkable things, but when you don't write them down, they get lost in the daily routine of working, grocery shopping, and doing household chores.
By the end of the year, you'll have written a book full of the things you'd usually forget. It becomes a keepsake for the future, or for your kids when they're your age. The Remarkable Year makes for a fantastic memento, and an excellent answer to the question, "how did you spend your year?"
Each week, instead of writing your to-do list, you write your "to-done" list, explaining your progress or achievements in the following categories:
Fitness: Are you training for a race? How's it going? Did you play tennis outside? Ride your bike? Do yoga?
Finance: Did you make an extra debt payment or hit a savings target? Did you avoid buying something you wanted but didn't need?
Projects: How are your crafts going? What about your blog? Are you developing an app? Knitting a scarf? What did you finish this week? What are you working on?
Best Meals: Use this section to make note of the things you loved to eat this week. Restaurant meals, meals cooked at home, meals prepared for you at a friend's house. Refer to this section when you get stuck in a cooking rut later in the year.
Work: We spend so much of our lives at work. What did you get done this week? Did you nail a presentation? Get a compliment from a colleague? Get asked to speak at a conference?
Family: Family is so important, and so easily neglected. Make a point to be more present to the people you love most of all. Take good notes in this section, as it will prove to be the most valuable as time goes on.
Fun: If you can't have a good time, what's the point of it all? Make sure you're able to mark at least one thing down each week in the fun category.
Social: Did you make it to happy hour? That's both fun AND social. Twofer! Which friends did you see?
Every week contains a small list of reminders as well as a question: "What's on Your Mind?"
Plus an inspiring quote, to keep you motivated each week.
Your year in review: The good, the bad, the medium.
Memorable moments of the last 12 months
Guided questions to help you remember what made last year special
Annual goal setting guide to help you brainstorm, define, and create actions for the next 12 months
Guidance to refine your big goals and split them into quarters
The year, at a glance
Monthly reflection pages, with space to doodle or plan, or respond to the prompt
Quarterly goal check-ins, with guidance to refine your goals if your path has changed.
Weekly layouts (Sunday-Saturday) for every week
You'll be encouraged to check on your goals quarterly, and refine them if your path has changed. We know that life's path isn't a straight line, from start to finish, and The Remarkable Year gives you the flexibility to adjust your path if necessary.
The Remarkable Year ends with another reflection section. How was your year?
The best part?
You end the year with an incredible account of all the things you did over the last 12 months. You'll be able to remember the positives (instead of letting your brain only recall the negatives). You'll discover for yourself the absolute value in writing things down, and how the simple act of putting pen to paper turns your dreams into reality.
Considering getting a copy of The Remarkable Year for yourself, a friend, a colleague, or a family member? The following people will benefit from a copy:
Those who feel like they're running on a treadmill and not actually getting anywhere. These people are running 100 miles an hour in 27 different directions, and they don't feel like they have anything to show for their efforts. The Remarkable Year will show them that they did a lot more than they thought, and will encourage them to keep up the good work.
Those who don't plan their days hour-by-hour. Or if they do, they're planning using a calendar app that helps ensure they make it to meetings on time.
Those who aren't always looking for a new app. In today's ever-connected world, some people seek to step back from technology. And what better way than to write down the major and mini-milestones in a beautiful book you write yourself.
Those who want to journal, but are intimidated by a completely blank page. It's often easier to respond to prompts instead of starting from a blank page. Writing prompts make it simple to jot down the important pieces of your week.
The Remarkable Year is a carefully made book written by you, measuring 8.5"x11" that will live on your desk for a year, then will find a place of honor on your bookshelf. The cover is vegan leather, and the color of the cover is a deep charcoal gray. It's a place to hold your thoughts, your dreams, and your accomplishments. It's a planner, a motivational coach, and a yearbook, all in one.
Your support will go toward our initial production run. The final product will include a beautiful vegan leather cover and high-quality publication-quality paper. It's the kind of book that you'll want to keep nearby, that you may even want to sniff, for that new-book, new-adventure smell.
And guess what? The adventure inside is your own story.
Join us. Make next year remarkable for you too.
Creating something beautiful is expensive. Creating a bound paper book with pages for writing? That's even more expensive. So, we're working with a publishing partner who can make The Remarkable Year cheaper for everyone, but only if we can order 1000 copies. That's why we're asking for so much money.
The story's only just beginning. Join us, and be a part of The Remarkable Community outside this page. We'll share updates, keep you in the loop, give you inspiration, and encourage you. We're social. Be social with us:
Bringing The Remarkable Year out of my head and into reality has been a process. If nothing else, I've learned that everything takes twice as long as you expect things to take.
My initial challenge? How do I get this vision of the different sized boxes, week layouts, monthly reflections, and goal setting sections out of the sketch pad and into a design program?
First, I realized I didn't know the first thing about designing a book. I tried to open the program, but got confused and overwhelmed and closed it immediately.
I also didn't have anything beyond a vague idea what it was going to look like. I knew I wanted quotes in every week, and I knew how the layout should go.
And that was it.
So, I reached out to a designer, who turned my outline into a first draft.
After several modifications and iterations, I sent the first draft to the printer.
Lesson One: Font Size Matters
I went to FedEx to pick up the first draft. I was really excited. Finally, I can get this off my screen and onto paper, where it belongs!
That's when I learned my first important lesson: objects on the screen are larger than they appear. Fonts, specifically. I mean, I know intuitively that size 32 font is large, but it wasn't until I saw it printed out that I understood how large it is.
I knew we were getting somewhere, though. So I kept modifying and adjusting and asking friends and family for feedback.
Lesson Two: The Internet is Filled with Lies
At some point I realized I needed to fact check the quotes I pulled from a Google search. Eight out of ten quotes I found were misattributed or flat out wrong. Who knew that Abraham Lincoln did not in fact have anything to say about the internet?
So, I found a great place to source quotes and swapped my lies for truths.
Lesson Three: Printing Books at the Local Copy Place is Pricey!
I spent a lot of money on spiral-bound drafts, and realized if I'm going to be able to bring this to market, there's simply no way I can print The Remarkable Year domestically and still make it affordable.
So I partnered with a printing company that will help.
Lesson Four: Take a Class!
When The Remarkable Year was still in the idea phase, I found an amazing class through my local community college. Each week, solo entrepreneurs meet to discuss the foundations of starting a business. I was able to get clear on what, exactly, The Remarkable Year is after meeting with peers week after week. So, if you have an idea that you want to bring to market, search for your local small business development center and take a class!
Lesson Five: Learn from Your Community
I can't wait to see where this goes. I already have ideas for iterations down the line, and am 100% open to suggestions for improvements or other versions you'd like to see. I don't know what my next lesson is, but I know it'll come from you.
I'm amazed and surprised at how much I've learned through this process. If you're still reading this, thanks for making it this far! Tweet to @remarkableyear and tell me how you're planning on making next year remarkable! And if you haven't checked out the rewards section, please do so -- order a book for you or someone you love.
Anne, who was instrumental in getting this out of my head
Every friend and family member who listened to me and provided feedback
Risks and challenges
We will work tirelessly to get everyone's order fulfilled in time for Christmas! If we could master the weather, and make sure all shipments come to us in time for us to get them to you, we would. Please be patient with us!
We've never done this before, but we're working with people who really know their stuff.
If you haven't checked out the rewards section, please do so -- order a book for you or somone you love.