Joseph B. Wirthlin reminds us that “Dates that come around every year help us measure progress in our lives. One annual event, New Year’s Day, is a time of reflection and resolution.” Around this time, many people are focused on setting New Year’s resolutions and goals that they would like to achieve in the coming year. While this is great, the close of a year is a valuable time to reflect on your actions, achievements, setbacks and failures of the current year.
As you sit to plan your resolutions for the New Year, I recommend the following:
- Review the goals you set for the current year
- How many of them did you achieve?
- Did you stay focused on achieving them?
- Are you satisfied with the number of goals you achieved versus the number of goals set?
- Look at your achievements
- What steps did you take to make them a reality?
- How did you overcome challenges you faced in order to achieve your goals?
- How did achieving them inspire you or spur you to achieve more?
- Assess your failures
- What caused those failures?
- What are the lessons you took away from failing?
- How can you ensure you do not make the same mistakes again?
- Review the amount of goals you set
- Was it a realistic amount?
- Were there sufficient goals to keep you challenged throughout the year?
- Did you track them periodically throughout the year & adjust as necessary?
It is important to reflect on your actions vs. the achievement of your goals. This is one of the greatest learning opportunities. Take time to review how you achieved your goals; it could possibly be a best practice or your recipe for success. Note the reasons you failed. This is how you learn what not to do, how to adjust your actions and how to avoid repeating the same mistakes.
Use the lessons from the current year and allow them to make goal setting for the New Year a smoother and a more intentional process. As I close today’s blog, I remind you of Cavett Roberts statement which says “Character is the ability to carry out a good resolution long after the excitement of the moment has passed.” Don’t get caught up in the hype of setting goals for the sake of setting goals. Get focused on setting your goals with the purpose of achieving them.
Tip of the week: Reflection is one of the best learning tools. Don’t discount it’s value.