It’s almost time to say goodbye to another trip around the sun and welcome a fresh start for a new calendar year. It’s typically the time when we hear a lot about New Year’s resolutions, and while making new goals for personal growth is important it’s also great to reflect on all of the efforts you’ve put forth into the past year so you can approach the new year with a clean slate. I want to share some ideas for reflecting on a full year so you feel inspired to start 2018 with a clear mind, positive thoughts, and gratitude. I love to do this in a little gratitude journal given to me by a dear friend. Every year, I update it with these reflections, and every year, before my new entry, I love to go back and read my entry from the year prior and see how I’ve grown and changed as a person.
1. Write down 5 accomplishments you were most proud of this year and how you took the steps to achieve these pivotal moments.
2. Add 3 more goals you’re looking forward to accomplishing in the new year. Jot down a few notes or keywords beside each goal with initial steps for getting these plans started, such as new travel destinations, hobbies you’d like to try, or changes to your daily routine, etc.
3. Write down the names of 5 people (or more if you’d like!) who were the best supporters during your hardest and happiest times this year. Send them a ‘Thank You’ card or kind e-mail reminding them of what their presence this year meant to you. It’s always important to remember the relationships that have strengthened over time and express gratitude to the person(s) who contributed to your personal growth. I’m a big supporter of sending letters via snail mail- I know I love getting more than just bills in my mailbox, and I also love stationary!
4. You know those moments when you run into someone you know and quickly say “We should grab coffee soon!”, but then days/weeks/months fly by and next thing you know it’s NYE and you never had that coffee date? It happens, and these encounters just need a little follow through. Try taking the initiative now and write down 5 names of people who you want to reconnect with or start a connection with in the new year! For example, if there is someone within your professional network who you admire and have been wanting to get to know better, set a deadline for reaching out to them to grab a coffee and solidify a date as soon as you start the conversation. Make sure you follow through by checking-in with them 1 week or 1 day before the scheduled date to confirm the meet-up. Make it happen!
5. Take a scroll through your camera roll in your phone or on your computer and find the top 5 moments/pictures that make you happiest when reminiscing on that memory. Make it a goal to print those photos and display them in a place you’ll see often throughout the week. Use them as a reminder of the moments you want to continue to create in 2018!
6. The New Year usually means starting a fresh new journal or planner (you know how much I love a good planner!) and here’s what you can put on the first few pages: Write a letter to yourself talking about where you currently are in life (mentally, emotionally, and professionally) and what you hope to achieve in 2018. Every now and then flip back to these beginning pages and read through this letter. It will serve as a reminder for the progress you’ve made and how much further you can take yourself. A great planner that already has room for the letter and your new goals and aspirations is the Day Planner, which you can find here.
I hope you have a very happy New Year, and I look forward to the future with you!