For years I have taken time in December to reflect on the previous year and write personal and professional goals for the upcoming year. It started when I was in college, while home on the winter break. I sat down in front of our stone fireplace and reviewed the year’s accomplishments and heartaches. There were things I was proud of and things I wish I could undo. It was during these times I learned to be grateful to God for His provision and receive his grace for my failures. It gives me perspective and prepares my heart to move forward.
This year, I used Tim Elmore’s questions to guide me. I liked it so much I sent it to family members, friends and colleagues. His blog is growingleaders. Although Tim can do this in half a day, It takes me several hours for several days to complete.
Here are his questions and some of my comments:
- What are my fondest memories of 20__? Take time to celebrate and be grateful.
- What were the “big projects” I completed during the year?
- What were the defining moments during the last year?
- What did I procrastinate on and fail to get done? This question helps me refocus on what is really important.
- What books and mentors had the greatest impact on me? Why? I added movies and podcasts to my list.
- Am I closer to my friends and family from my activities this year?
- What will be my biggest goals as I move forward into 20__? Make sure they are specific, measurable, attainable, and time specific.
- Where did I neglect to live up to the standards I set for myself? This question teaches me more about God's grace. It also allows my to press the "reset" button.
- What am I committed to do this next year, to fulfill my “Life Sentence”?
Tim concludes, “Answering these questions allows me to accomplish two objectives. First, it forces me to focus on the important things in my life and not get lost in the trivial. Second, it furnishes me a platform to set goals for the new year.”
Thanks Tim for the help this year.
- For more of Tim Elmore, go to http://growingleaders.com/blog