I’ve heard a lot of people talking about 2020 planning lately, and as a big proponent of planning, it makes my heart swell. In these conversations, I’ve also noticed what seems like a common omission: reflecting. In our desire to focus on the future – which I respect – we often miss some of the wisdom we can harvest from the past.
A special side note for people who have had a rough or challenging year: It can be tempting to want to put the past behind you, but if you’re too quick to close the book on it, there’s a good chance you’re leaving a lot of good stuff on the table. Or in other words: if you have to live through some “crap,” you might as well derive the benefit from it (knowledge!) instead of just the misery.
And for the rest of us – who may have had a decent or even good year – there’s still value in reflecting. Don’t believe me? Chew on these questions before you set your 2020 goals or resolutions and see what they bring up that might not have been on your radar before:
- What’s going well in your life? At your job?
- What are you most proud of from this past year? What brought you joy?
- What didn’t work well this year? What robbed you of energy?
- If you had to summarize 2019 in one word, what would it be?
- What do you want to do MORE of in 2020?
- What do you want to do LESS of in 2020?
- What would make 2020 a great year?
- What one word would you like to be your theme for 2020?
Of course there are other questions you can ask yourself – don’t feel limited to what I’ve listed. These are the just the key questions that usually help me get to a different, more intentional headspace before I start thinking about what I want the year head to look like.
As always, I’d love to hear from you. If you feel so inclined, please share your words with me for 2019 and 2020. I’ll go first:
- 2019: Balance
- 2020: Optimize