I think we can all agree that this year has been a whirlwind for everyone, especially small business owners. That’s why it’s so important to make the time to reflect!
Being a business owner, I think we all get so caught up in the day to day tasks involved with running our business that we don’t take enough time to review our progress, reflect on how far we have come, what we have achieved, and how hard we have worked towards making our dreams our reality.
It’s no secret that when running your own business, the days are chaos. By taking some time to reflect, this allows you to switch off from all the chaos around you and analyse the previous year. It gives you time to stand back and see everything you have achieved.
If you don’t take some time to reflect, how are you going to know where you need to develop next year?
When someone mentioned to me how doing a ‘life check’ is actually a life changing, important exercise to do, especially as we are fast approaching a new decade, I knew I just had to make the time.
How to review and reflect on your progress?
1. Set aside time to reflect
Often, we are so focused on where we need to go, our goals and moving forward, we forget to check back and see just how far we have come. This is a great chance to calculate just how much progress you have actually made. Being business owners on the go all the time, we don’t always get enough time to reflect on all the positive changes we have implemented.
I recommend allocating yourself a couple of hours before the year is out to really have a think and jot down how far you’ve come. It doesn’t even have to be solely based on your business success, it could be any or all aspects of your life. Really have a deep think about your journey and where it has taken you. It will most probably help you carve out a better goal path for the next year as well as allowing yourself a head start for positive action in January.
2. What have you achieved this year?
To make it easier, we can categorise the different aspects of our life into 6 main areas:
Career & business
Have a think of what you have achieved over the last year in every aspect of your life.
Ask yourself these questions. In what area have you excelled? What are you most proud of? What part of your business received the best feedback? Did you pass any financial thresholds? Social life in full swing this year? Literally anything you can think of, write it down to acknowledge your triumphs.
And it’s okay to have not achieved half of what you wanted or even less, this year has been crazy for everyone so don’t beat yourself up if you haven’t quite achieved what you hoped you would.
3. Have any dreams that you once thought were far out of reach, actually come true for you?
For example, this year we celebrated my first ever book launch ‘No Longer Last On The List‘, the launch of our new branding under my own name, Serenity Loves 8th Birthday, we’re moving into a BRAND NEW office AND expanding our team.
So I urge you to think about what you’ve accomplished at this point in your journey that your past self would be proud of.
4. Give yourself credit
Whatever it is, even if you think it was minor. Give yourself credit. You know what? Sometimes for me, just getting out of bed and dealing with life in general can be a struggle. But we get up, crack on and do the things we don’t always feel like doing. We work really, really hard and we absolutely should give ourselves a pat on the back every now and again. Also, we don’t need others to validate our successes. Our own recognition that, yes we did the work and it paid off, or eventually will pay off is the best validation we can give ourselves. This builds confidence in our overall capacity and in our ourselves.
5. What can you work on for the year ahead?
From taking stock of everything, we can now note the things we could have improved on or could put more effort into next year. Be specific and clear about what they can be and make sure they are goal orientated as we are more likely to succeed when there are specific targets.
Maybe your focus for 2021 could be expanding further on an already accomplished goal. Like for example, next year I’m focusing on bigger, better & more retreat offerings. They have been very successful with great feedback which means it’s definitely worth me working on progressing them next year.
An area of mine to work on that I haven’t quite mastered yet, is definitely my health and fitness. It’s something I really want to be more consistent with and push to the next level, so I will make sure I’ll be having regular sessions with my PT and I’ve signed up to do a half marathon in May.
6. Remember to incorporate self care into your routine in 2021
If there is one thing I‘ve learned over the years as I’m sure a lot of you can relate with, it’s that you “can’t pour from an empty cup.” You cant give your all and your best to something (in every aspect of your life) if you do not take care of yourself first. Mainly, the thing I would say is, it doesn’t always have to be fancy or look like facials, massages and someone feeding you grapes every hour.
Even if it’s just 30 minutes to yourself away from the kids, team or partner with a cup of tea and a book. You need that time to replenish your energy, so you can turn up to work and life and give the best of yourself.