"After working with Kristi, Hope Services' board members are much more engaged and collaborative. Before designing the retreat, Kristi took time to learn each personís thoughts and goals, then during the retreat she was an attentive, effective facilitator, flexible yet authoritative. She kept a roomful of high-powered executives on track! Kristi also did follow-up for some of the board's committees. We are more focused now, and making good progress on our goals, thanks to Kristi."

Cameron Haste, Chair, Board of Directors
Hope Services

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Review 2018 & Plan Your 2019 Success!

(posted: January 7th, 2019)

How did 2018 go for you?

As we end one year and start another, it's tradition that we are bombarded with the "Best of 2018" stories and lists, or "5 (or 7, or 10) Trends to Watch in 2019".

But what about taking a more personal approach?

What about you? What is your personal "Best of 2018"? What "trends" will you be encouraging in your life and career in 2019?

This year, I suggest making it your tradition to review the highs and lows of your past year, and look at what you may want to focus on or amplify in the coming year. It's a practical strategy to help you reach your goals.

What Can You Celebrate?

What did you accomplish in 2018?

Start by looking back at what you did well over the last 12 months.

We often brush past our accomplishments without giving them much thought and without giving ourselves much credit. As leaders, most of you understand the value of praising and honoring your employees' achievements and your company's milestones.

The things we achieved, that we mastered, or that we simply got done, also deserve some attention. Why shouldn't you give yourself the same respect and attention that you give your people?

So take a little time now to review and celebrate your successes!

This process is simple, but not necessarily easy:

  1. Schedule a chunk of time when you can be uninterrupted.
  2. Turn off your devices, or mute your notifications and deliberately put your phone and tablet out of sight. If you plan to do this on your desktop computer, close your email and your social media streams. It will be okay, it's only for an hour or so.
  3. Close your door and let your family or colleagues know that you don't want to be disturbed for the next hour.
  4. Plan to write your answers. Yes, by hand, on paper, with a pen!

Now, think about what you accomplished over the course of 2018, big or small. Even something like remembering to floss most days of the week can count!

Use the following questions to get you started, and write freely whatever comes to mind. If you need to, refer back to your calendar or agenda to jump-start your memory.

  • What were my top accomplishments or successes in 2018?
  • Why am I proud of these successes? Be specific.
  • How do these successes make me feel?
  • What and/or who enabled me to accomplish what I did?
  • What am I grateful for?
  • Did anyone have a profound impact on me this year? Who?
  • Is there anyone I should thank or acknowledge?

There will come a time when you believe everything is finished. That will be the beginning.

~ Louis L'Amour

What Can You Learn From Your Failures?

Can I convince you to go a step further?

Our failures have at least as much to teach us as our successes, if not more. It takes courage to look closely at the times when you slipped up, when you dropped the ball, or didn't come through. But if you are willing to see them as opportunities, you can learn from your failures.

I love this post from Seth Godin - a short list of words & phrases that can represent failure. Your failures and mine may be very different, but you are likely to find something on Seth's list that makes you say, "Yeah, that's mine" - I certainly did!

After you've done your success exercise, above, use the following questions to help you look more objectively at your failures:

  • Where did I fail in 2018?
  • What caused this? Internal reasons (e.g., lack of confidence, procrastination, etc.) External reasons (e.g., lack of resources, lack of support, etc.)
  • What can I learn from these failures? Be specific
  • How does this experience make me feel?
  • How could I do it differently the next time?

Your answers to these questions will be individual and highly personal. Use them to move forward, get unstuck, make progress in difficult areas, and to help you define your focus for this year.

A few more questions to help you keep moving:

  • Look for the possibilities and for places where you need to start doing more, and the places where you need to stop doing something.
  • Identify who can help you, and how.
  • How do your core values relate to this exercise - what stands out?
  • How do your answers affect your purpose and your goals?
Challenge Yourself
  • How will you take what you've learned into 2019?
  • How are you going to succeed this year?
  • Who will you share this with? I support many clients as a coach, providing accountability, perspective and support. My clients want, and need, structure and partnership. I suggest that you write down 5 people who can help you achieve your dreams and goals.
  • How will you celebrate that success?

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