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Decade Worthy Resolutions

Decade Worthy Resolutions

Fresh starts, clean slates, new beginnings, and turning the page are all sentiments attached to New Year resolutions.  The beginning of a new year provides a calendar driven opportunity to reflect on the past and imagine and dream about the future.

Of course, we can do this any day of the year, but the countdown to midnight that ushers in the official resolution season is hard to resist.

Depending on your season of life there is the potential that you have had anywhere between 20 to 60+ sets of New Year goals and aspirations.  Last week I heard about a long standing tradition of an acquaintance that involved making predictions as to what would happen in each family members’ life in the coming year.  They have collected twenty years of predictions and really enjoy seeing which ones have come to pass.

In my own family, we have tried a variety of ways to mark the start of the New Year including picking theme songs, a guiding word or phrase, and eating a lot of luck infused black eyed peas.

This year, I felt a heightened need to create meaningful resolutions.  One-year commitments didn’t seem lofty enough for the dawn of a new decade.  In hindsight each decade is assigned an identity, but what does it look like to plan for a 10-year journey from the start?

In the world of lightening speed innovation, diminished attention spans, and instant gratification we tend to want to see results quickly, and often abandon our dreams when we don’t think things are happening fast enough.  Just think of how quickly we lose sight of the resolutions we made just a couple of weeks ago.  Research indicates that January 12th is the average day that most people break one or more of their newly minted commitments.  With these kinds of statistics, decade dreaming seems daunting.

But many amazing accomplishments have been possible in the span of a decade when a dream is matched with a time certain finish.  Some projects take time and require the commitment of nation, a community, a neighborhood, or a group of individuals to keep the vision alive.

NASA’s Apollo space program, the Brooklyn Bridge, James Cameron’s Avatar, Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking and endless Steve Jobs and Elon Musk products are all great slow mastery achievements that took a decade or more to become a reality.

So, what are decade worthy dreams and resolutions for Southwest Florida?  In our region, data reveals that there are opportunities for creating access to housing, mental health services, restoration of the Everglades, improved water quality, expanded trained workforce, reduction in gun violence and support for entrepreneurs from underserved communities.  But like any other big dream these can only be realized with an unwavering commitment to change, an entity to keep the dream alive, unprecedented investments in nonprofits and a time certain deadline.

At the Southwest Florida Community Foundation, our team works with donors, organizations and individuals to create solutions and support for decade worthy dreams and those who dream them.

We would love to hear yours, email me at [email protected].


About the Southwest Florida Community Foundation

The Southwest Florida Community Foundation, founded in 1976, cultivates regional change for the common good through collective leadership, social innovation and philanthropy to address the evolving community needs in Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Hendry and Glades counties. The Foundation partners with individuals, families and corporations who have created more than 400 philanthropic funds. Thanks to them, the Foundation invested $7.7 million in grants and programs to the community. With assets of $134.9 million, it has provided $83.7 million in grants and scholarships to the communities it serves since inception. The Foundation is the backbone organization for the regional FutureMakers Coalition and Lee County’s Sustainability Plan. The Southwest Florida Community Foundation’s regional headquarters are now located in the historic ACL Train Depot at Collaboratory in downtown Fort Myers, with a satellite office located in LaBelle (Hendry County). For more information, call 239-274-5900 or visit









Sarah Owen
Sarah Owen

Sarah Owen, President & CEO of the Southwest Florida Community Foundation, leads a passionate and diverse team dedicated to driving regional change for the common good. The Foundation is committed to engaging the community in conversations and action that creates sustainable positive change and provides the funding to make those changes a reality. More