#53: Turning over a tough year
Some short thoughts on how to review and close out a tough year, and set ourselves up for a powerful, generative new year.
Completion questions: remembering and reviewing
What was your favorite music playlist?
Who was your favorite artist?
What was your favorite song?
What was your favorite concert?
What were your favorite photos?
What were your favorite videos?
What was your favorite movie?
What were your favorite articles?
What was your favorite travel?
What were your favorite experiences?
What was your favorite speaking, teaching, awards, or recognition?
What were your favorite memories?
What was your favorite restaurant?
What was your favorite meal?
What was your favorite first meeting?
Past year calendar review
This is an exercise I learned from Tim Ferriss, and it's great. If you do nothing else, I'd do this.
Simply put, you go through the entire past year on your calendar, and make a list of the people, activities, and commitments that triggered peak positive/negative emotions on a weekly or monthly basis. Then, find the 20% of each list that produced the most reliable or powerful peaks. Proactively schedule the positive ones now, and avoid/reduce the negative ones.
Areas of life review
Look holistically across your life. Don't solely focus on your career. I tend to go through the following eight areas of life:
health & wellbeing
creative expression & fun (hobby, travel, adventure, etc)
wealth / finances
relationships (family, friends, romance, other)
personal systems (habits, routines, processes) & personal development
emotions / spiritual
For each area, I ask the following five questions (I don't necessarily answer all of them every time though):
what was accomplished?
what wasn't accomplished?
what didn't work?
what was missing?
Lastly, I like to have a freeform section that is just "is there anything else I need to say about this to feel complete?" I'm often surprised at what comes out here, so don't underestimate this question.