Reflecting on 2018; looking forward, with purpose, to 2019


The start of a new year is always a good time to set new goals for the year ahead, or to reassess and check progress made towards long-term goals previously made. However, I invite you to reflect on 2018 first, before you look forward to what you want to achieve in 2019.

One of the first exercises we do during the RenewYou workshop is to reflect on the previous 12 months ... with appreciation. Living in the frenetic times of today, with instant gratification and instant disappointment being the new normal, it's easy for us to forget or even disregard the many blessings and successes we've experienced in the year. This exercise usually leaves my workshops delegates quite surprised, because it's only when we pause to reflect, that we realise how much we have to appreciate and be grateful for.

I personally had a "moment" late last year when I thought to myself "I've achieved nothing this year!" As someone who, I now realise, measures their worth according to their productivity, I was feeling quite low at the time and I had to pull myself together and get some perspective. When I sat down to reflect on my year, I realised that I was completely disregarding the first eight months – the eight months of the year that I had been working at a corporate. I was only focussing on the three months as a solopreneur; an unrealistic and dangerous trap to fall into. This is, however, something we all do: focus mostly on only the bad things in our lives. (It's called negative bias - I wrote about this in a previous blog.) 

In retrospect, I achieved quite a lot in 2018, both at my previous employer and in my new role as a solopreneur. My year wasn't all good, but there was good to be found. So, if you are like me, I invite you make yourself a cup of tea or coffee, find a quiet place where you can reflect, for at least 30 minutes, on your 2018, and to jot down all that you achieved, no matter how small or insignificant you think those achievements were (it's not only about the big things) and to give yourself credit for your accomplishments.

Once you've reflected on 2018, I encourage you to write down your goals for 2019. I further encourage you to stretch yourself and go beyond what you think you can achieve, you know, those goals that you think are out of reach because of your self-limiting beliefs. However, be realistic too. Don't set yourself 30 goals, for example. Consider any big life  events that may be taking place, such as a wedding, or a birth, exams, 3-month travel plans... and then set a maximum of 5 to 10 goals for the year. Research shows that people who write their goals down are 38% more likely to achieve them. 

Your goals are your destination for the next 12 months. The journey, is what happens in-between. And as with every journey, there's no guarantee that it will be a smooth and easy ride from start to end. There are generally pot-holes, traffic, storms, road-works, flat tyres, poor visibility, kids getting sick in the back seat etc. that delay, but don't necessarily prevent you from reaching your destination. Similarly, if you know what your goals are and why it's important for you to achieve them, how you get there is irrelevant, because ultimately, if it means enough to you, you'll persevere despite any deterrents and do what it takes to achieve them.
I've set myself five personal and 5 business goals for 2019. They are quite a stretch, if I do say so myself. To be honest, a couple of them make my stomach turn a little when I think about them – they make me that nervous – but I know why I've set them and why they're important to me, so I will work towards them purposefully, ask for guidance and support where necessary, and with some divine intervention added in, possibly some tears and mini-breakdowns along the way, I look forward to seeing those goals met.

So, here's to 2019. May it be everything you wish it to be and so much more. May you grow and learn and experience as much as you allow yourself to, but above all else, remember to enjoy the journey.

P.S. Feel free to contact me for a free chemistry session, should you wish to have coaching support to achieve your 2019 goals. I do offer coaching packages. Or, if you'd like to get your employer to invest in a RenewYou workshop (or the Impostor Syndrome workshop) for you and your colleagues, feel free to send me an email or give me a call. My passion and purpose is to help empower women to achieve their big hairy audacious goals and reach to their full potential.

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