A simple guide to REFLECTING
Whether or not you are a “New Year’s Resolution” person, the New Year can often bring about a feeling of starting fresh and a new beginning of sorts. It can often inspire you to dream and plan out some goals for your day/week/month/year. I am bringing you this information at the start of the year because I love the feeling of New Year’s and a fresh start, but what I’m going to share is totally applicable ANY TIME OF THE YEAR!
Because goals and dreams are my absolute jam and favorite thing, I’ve decided to write a little series all about goals, planning, habits, etc. But before we can get to what I call the fun stuff, it’s important to reflect. Whether you are reflecting on yesterday, last week, last month, or last year, reflection can help you to figure out what’s most important, what’s working, and what’s not working so that you can better hone in on which goals are most important to you. So this is where we begin the series…REFLECTION.
Stick with me here. If you are at all like me, reflection can be so difficult. I prefer to have a vision, set a goal, and make moves to the future. No need to look back, it’s in the past, why do I want to dwell on any of that?!? BUT, each year I attempt to do some reflection before writing out my goals. This year, with the help of an awesome podcast episode (which I will share with you), I did my best reflecting EVER and was also able to use the reflective work I did to create my word of the year AND my goals! WOAH!!!! Yep, this reflection exercise is simple, and not super time consuming. It does however, require that you set aside a little bit of time, distraction free for you to fully explore and write out your thoughts on the previous year.
The podcast episode that completely changed the way I reflected on this past year is from the Christy Wright Show. When I say it is a good listen, I mean it. I have listened to it almost 3 full times, AND I’ve actually done the work she suggests! I also found it so helpful that I’ve also shared it with the ladies who are joining me for an amazing long weekend business retreat in a few weeks. They too found it incredibly helpful. AND SIMPLE!
I’ll give you the basics and then share the link to the actual episode again at the end! I’ll also share a few tips to really dive deep in a quick time frame. So grab a notebook, piece of paper, and a pen - here we go.
As you think back through your previous year, you will answer 4 basic questions. I answered these questions in full on a bullet pointed list form. But you do you! Answer these questions and move through this exercise however it feels best for you. You can write these 4 questions on separate pages/papers, or take one paper and split it into 4 columns. Again, what feels good to you!
1. What was RIGHT?
What was right, good, worked well, felt amazing, went well, felt true, was basically awesome?
Write out all of those things.
You can do this exercise for each individual area of your life, or just in general. (I just made a big long list)
Once you have your list of all the RIGHT things, write the word “AMPLIFY” next to the “What was Right” at the top of your page or column. The things you wrote down on this list are things you want to do MORE of this coming year. Or at least make sure you do again, or do them bigger and better! You get it, AMPLIFY!!
2. What was WRONG?
What was wrong, mistakes made, felt bad, wished you could change, didn’t work, felt yucky.
Write your list of things.
Same thing as before, once you have your list, write the word “FIX” next to the “What was Wrong” title. Things that ended up on this list will be things you need to fix, or possibly even get rid of for the coming year or season. This is not a column/page to make you feel bad, just simply a place to write out the wrongs so that you are aware and work to fix them.
3. What was MISSING?
What wasn’t there that should have been there? Was there a hole where there shouldn’t have been?
This one can be a little difficult so I’ll share some ideas. Were date nights or your relationship with your spouse missing? Did you have scheduled time for you for self care? Did you have fun? How was your relationship with God? How was your relationship with others?
Write your list.
By “What was Missing” at the top, write the word “ADD”. If things were missing and you felt that loss or emptiness, then you need to figure out how to ADD them in for this next year. (by this point you can see how helpful these lists will be for your goal planning!)
4. What was CONFUSED?
What was chaos, caused anxiety, needed clarity? What just felt a little off and not quite put together?
Write your list.
Next to “What was Confused” write the word “CLARIFY”. These are the items that you need to clarify. Pray about, journal about, seek clarification and understanding. For me, this list is going to take the most time to figure out. I have things like “not clear on my purpose”, “scattered plans for my business”, “delegation”. All very actionable, but will take a bit of meditation, prayer, and quiet time to figure out.
A few tips to help you write out these lists
Set aside a couple dedicated hours for this activity.
Find a quiet, comfy place to think and write.
Meditate prior to sitting down to do this reflection. It will help to clear your mind and get you in the right headspace.
WRITE your list with pen and paper. Do not type on a computer, phone, or tablet. Pen to paper brings out emotional connections as well as keeps digital distractions away.
That’s it! It is so simple! Once you start writing out your lists, I know that meaningful goals
and habits you need to create will become more clear. You will be able to see the things that really matter to you and make sure you are working those things into your goals and plans. FOR REAL, this could be the step that changes the trajectory of your year. This could be the step that helps you to make real, meaningful goals that you will in turn work to achieve! Gah! I’m getting goosebumps just thinking about it. I want to see you win so so much!
Here is the Christy Wright Show episode that has inspired this post and where most of the information came from. I highly recommend listening to it, and saving it to your favorites. You could do this exercise each month or season, or after specific events/projects. It is a way to help you grow and continue creating your best version of you!
As always, you are amazing, beautiful, and so worthy of all the goodness that is coming to you! Keep striving to live your best, most awesome life, as wildly you!
Love you friends! I’m cheering for you!
Xoxo - Chrystal