As each year wraps up, I take the time to review it. The best way to get ahead is to ensure that you take the lessons of the past with you and let the worry go. Take time to assess your personal and professional challenges and accomplishments THIS year, so you can look forward with excitement to the year before you. Crafting your own annual review of both your life and your business will show you clearly the milestones you’ve achieved and those yet to be conquered.Know Where You’ve Been to Understand Where You are Going
Here are some questions to ask, and answer, in your annual review. Doing this on a yellow legal pad by hand will ensure greater retention than on a white screen with you keyboard. (Yes, it has been scientifically proven that manual recording, while slower, will embed knowledge more soundly than keyboarding.)
1. What have I accomplished this year? Be specific. Write it all down. Schedule time to celebrate this!
2. What have I learned this year? What skills did you pick up? What new tools do you have in your business?
3. What got in my way? This is where your work will be next year. Be honest if it was you that got in your way.
4. Who contributed to my successes? What can you do to recognize these members of your personal or professional team?
5. What mistakes did I make, and what did I learn from them? Writing these down is a good refresher for what not to do next year.
6. How was my work consistent with my values? What will you do with the inconsistencies?
7. Where did I abdicate responsibility? Sometimes this is easier to see with a little distance from the actual event.
8. How did my performance rate? Give yourself a letter grade or a 1-10 score.
9. What do I need to let go of? Doing so can help you move much more lightly into the new year.
10. What was missing for me this year? How can you incorporate it into next year?
Imagine how much more powerful this annual review exercise will be when you institute it quarterly or even monthly. Instead of racing to the next month and milestone, take even a couple of hours to assess where you’ve been, what you accomplished, what you didn’t get done, and what matters most. You’ll find that you will learn the necessary lessons faster, and success will happen that much sooner.
Say thank you for a year well lived and for the lessons you’ve learned. Know that you can make 2014 your year.
Post me on your BIG TAKE AWAYS from 2014 in the comments below!