As we move into the final months of the year it is traditionally the time to review the past 12 months and look ahead to our goals for next year. Sometimes the review process can be a source of disappointment and melancholy, especially if it’s been a tough year. So in this post I want to look at how to approach the review process and spot the positives.
Use your feelings
One of the easiest ways to identify the highlights of your year is to consider your feelings. The highs and lows over the past 12 months will be tied to the emotions you felt at the time and as you review now.
Think about the feelings you wanted to feel at the start of the year, and how you actually felt as events unfolded. When you achieved a goal that was in alignment with what’s important to you, you would have felt energised and inspired. If you failed to reach a target during the year there would have been feelings of disappointment.
One potential problem is the widespread belief in internet marketing that if you are not making money, you are not making progress. This is wrong. If you’re not making money, it either means you have not yet provided enough value or benefit, or it means your message isn’t getting out there. Steps taken towards achieving these two objectives still count as progress.
It’s easy to fall into the trap of considering how far we have fallen short of our goals, and neglect looking back to see how far we have come. If this is an issue, I recommend you take a look at my review of Avoiding the Gap.
Don’t underestimate your progress
As you review your year you should be measuring it against your situation at the start of 2014. This will be easier to do if you have celebrated and recorded your successes on a weekly or daily basis. If you have not been doing this over the past 12 months I strongly recommend you make it a goal for next year.
Remember to include your failures. You can find plenty of quotes online from Bill Gates to Walt Disney about the positive side of failing. Regard failure or underachievement as a learning process and you can add these to the progress you have made this year.
So don’t be modest. There is no reason to discount something if it adds value for your customers or it is a step in the process of providing value.