‘Tis the season for rejoicing, but when you look back at 2010 does the mood fit? I hope so! Whether you are rejoicing or regretting, a review of the year past and some careful planning for the year ahead will certainly pay off. Here are some great questions to help you step into 2011 on solid ground. I suggest you print these questions out and give them your attention, and intention, writing the answers in longhand. This will allow the creative side of your brain to become engaged in the process; you may be surprised at what you discover!
Review – To gain clarity about where you are and where you'd like to go, it's important to acknowledge your successes as well as the challenges that you faced in 2010:
- What did you love about 2010?
- What were some of the highlights?
- What accomplishments stand out the most?
- What were some of the things that didn't turn out as planned?
- What empowering things did you learn from these experiences?
Renew – Consider your answers to the above questions and think about how 2011 will be different for you. It's important to have a clear vision and an understanding of how you will achieve your vision.
- What is your vision for 2011? Is it different than it was in 2010?
- What would you like to duplicate and/or build upon in 2011?
- Based on what you learned from your 2010 experiences, is there anything you will do differently in 2011?
- What are your top ten goals for 2011? To determine your primary goals, think about what you would like to change, implement or grow upon. Keep your goals realistic and attainable, but step just outside of your comfort zone.
- Are your goals congruent with your vision?
- Of your ten goals, which are your three primary goals going into first quarter? (Do this exercise at the end of each quarter.)
Now, to make sure each goal is measurable, let's check their current and desired states. Do this for each of your three primary goals.
Current State: What is the current state of your goal? For instance, if you intend to write a book, do you have an outline or any content together yet? If you intend to begin outsourcing, what steps are in place? Do you have resources, a list of tasks, a budget in place?
Desired State: To move from the current state to the desired state you must know specifically what you want to have in place once you have achieved this goal.
List the top five reasons why it is important for you to accomplish this outcome.
- How will you know that you have achieved this goal?
- How do you think you will feel once you've achieved this goal?
- What are the exact steps you need to take to achieve your goal?
- How can you create accountability to your goals? Is there a way to make it fun? For some ideas check out 5 Ways to Achieve Follow Through.
Rejoice! Hopefully, this exercise will boost your confidence and renew your spirit going into 2011. This exercise alone is a great achievement, so congratulations! How will you celebrate your successes?
Finally, make a list of ten things that you can choose from to show appreciation to yourself and to make time for YOU in the coming year. This self-acknowledgement and awareness will fuel your forward momentum!
In this, the last of The Successful Soloist posts of the year, I would like to extend my thanks for your support, comments, tweets – and – well, just for being YOU. All of the Successful Soloists out there are an important piece of our global economy and are critical to the expansion of services and products that make billions of consumers happy each year!
Marla Tabaka is a small-business advisor who helps entrepreneurs around the globe grow their businesses well into the millions. She has over 25 years of experience in corporate and start-up ventures and speaks widely on combining strategic and creative thinking for optimum success and happiness.