Words of Wisdom for 2018

posted on December 18th 2017 in Advice

We reached out to a group of Seattle leaders to ask them for their thoughts, suggestions and wisdom for the upcoming 2018 year and here are their responses.

I stay clear on my values – what I care most about – and how to turn my passions into action while also caring for myself.  For example, I stay in touch with the news of the world but don’t overdo it.  I watch or listen to the news for about a half hour a day, and generally not more than that.  Too much TV or radio news, too much social media, stresses me out and leaves me feeling overwhelmed.  Another way I focus on my values is volunteer work and using my voice for the natural world and wild animals.  I weave my love for nature into self-care by taking long walks outdoors.  Being true to who I am, taking action on my values, and making time for myself helps me face challenges.


I pay attention to the people and activities that give me energy versus the ones that deplete it. I try to increase my capacity by balancing the tasks, groups and relationships where I spend time. They’re not are equal in what they return on my focus and time. For example, my tennis-playing community is a big energy-capacity giver. Anytime I’m out on the court, I’m fully present, breathing hard, learning, sometimes laughing, and always feeling connected. If I let my life get “too busy” for tennis, it’s always a mistake.


I love the winter holiday messages of light, love and giving. I also fall prey to the amped up demands of parties, decorations, baking, family, and of course the anticipation of the big day (for one last year, Santa will come to my house.) The season is exhilarating and melancholy. Every year, I give myself permission to be simultaneously joyful for everyone I am so fortunate to have in my life, and nostalgic for my loved ones who have gone before me. I also take a few minutes to review what went well, what I wish went better, and why. For the things that went well, I am thankful, and make plans to build on those successes. For things that went south, I mourn them a bit, assess why they didn’t work, and then mentally, I let them go, making room for the great things to come in the new year. Oh – and cookies. Lots of cookies.


Take the time to be intentional with your day. With the pace of the world hitting us at breakneck speed, it is all too easy to be swept up in the needs of others leaving us in a reactionary position. When we are at the mercy and whim of others, the results are often not positive. We can get emotionally triggered, over-stressed, or end the day feeling as if we haven’t accomplished anything meaningful. Instead, take 5-10 minutes each morning, before you hop on email or turn on the news, to create and cement your intention for the day. It could be that you will resolve a particular issue or that you will accomplish an important goal. Or, it could be that you intend to handle whatever life throws at you with grace, compassion, and strength. When we take the time to set a rudder deeply into the tumultuous sea of reality, it is much easier to ensure we answer the winds of change with integrity.



I’m supposed to share advice with you on how to be resilient… but the fact is, resiliency is hard, I struggle with it constantly, and I don’t always succeed. But when I do, this is why:

     I am more resilient when I care about what I do. It is really that simple.

     I am more resilient when I sleep well. I bet I would be even more resilient if I exercised more and stuck to clean eating 🙂

     I am more resilient when I. Put. The. Phone. Down.

     I am more resilient when I let myself see the world through my daughter’s eyes. To her, everything is magical. If I’m with her long enough, it starts to rub off.

     I am more resilient when I do the hard thing and move on.

     I am more resilient when I give myself permission to feel bad for a little while, drink a little wine, eat a little ice cream, watch a little Sex and the City, stay in PJs a little too long. We all deserve to feel the suckiness when things are hard.

     I am more resilient when I look for the good in people.

     I am more resilient when I get a babysitter and go on a date with my husband.

     I am more resilient when I am honest.

     I am just a little more resilient every day. It’s what comes with experience.

Here’s wishing you sleep, magic, date nights, meaning and resiliency in 2018.

Mikaela Kiner

Mikaela is a native Seattleite who’s spent the last fifteen years in HR leadership roles at iconic Northwest companies including Microsoft, Amazon, PopCap Games and Redfin. She has an MS in HR Management with a certificate in Organizational Development and is an ICF credentialed coach. Mikaela delivers results by building trust and engaging her clients in creative problem solving. Clients appreciate her strategic thinking and hands on execution.