Many of us start the New Year with a whole list of resolutions that we often break or simply forget about within a few weeks. But how can we ensure that we make resolutions that we can actually stick to and that will help to improve our lives in a positive way? Well, we believe it comes from creating New Year’s resolutions from a place of reflection, intention and positivity, rather than a place of self-criticism or judgement.
It is important for us to sit down and review the past year so that we are able to remind ourselves what we are proud of, what worked and what didn’t, and what we want to bring more of into our lives in the coming year. By doing this, we can figure out what actions we are taking in our lives that are in line with our values, and what we are perhaps doing for other reasons such from a place of fear or duty.
Read on to discover our top tips for reviewing the past year before making New Year’s Resolutions, so that you can create goals that you will actually accomplish in 2020!
Gratitude For Your Achievements
The best way to start reviewing your past year is to write down all the things that you have achieved that you are proud of. This starts the whole journaling process from a positive mindset and allows you to focus on your accomplishments rather than your downfalls.
You should try to write down everything you can think of that you have achieved, no matter how big or small, and we’re sure you’ll be amazed at how much you have successfully completed in the past year!
By seeing these achievements written down on paper, you’ll be able to give yourself a huge pat on the back and remind yourself how great you are, which is sure to spur you on to want to create new goals for the coming year.
Figure Out What’s Important
Another feature of reviewing the past year is that you can figure out what is important to you and why. Marie Forleo thinks this is one of the essential factors to consider when reflecting as when you understand what have been the most meaningful and significant parts of your past year, you are able to create new goals in line with these values.
It may take a little digging to find out the root reason as to why certain things were important to you, so take time to sit with your accomplishments and try to feel in your heart what it was about achieving it that made you so happy. Was it because you gained a true connection with someone? Was it because you were living your purpose? Was it because you made a positive difference in someone’s life?
It doesn’t matter what it is that is important to you, only that it feels true to your authentic self and not your ego.
Make Sure You Don’t Make The Same Mistakes
Thirdly, reviewing the past year ensures that you don’t continue to make the same mistakes over and over again. Many of us are guilty of doing the same thing and expecting different results, an attitude that Einstein and Alcoholics Anonymous define as insanity!
Not wanting to dwell on insanity, let’s instead focus on the lessons we need to learn from the past year. Take time to write down what were the most important lessons you learnt from 2019 and why it is critical that you don’t forget them. It may be useful to put these on a Post-It note and stick it somewhere that you will see on a regular basis such as your computer screen or mirror so that you are reminded each and every day what you are aiming for and why.
How Interactions Made You Feel
Another point for reflection is how interactions or activities made you feel. Tim Ferriss, author of the 4-Hour Workweek uses a simple Past Year Review (PYR) technique that has you writing down people, activities or commitments that triggered positive or negative emotions within you. From here you can look forward to the next year, doing more of what made you feel good and less of the stuff that brought you down
It sounds simple, right? Yet so many of us don’t do it! Why not make 2020 the year you fill your diary with things that make you feel incredible rather than those your ‘ought to do’ or that you go to just because of #FOMO?!
Lastly, it’s good to review the past year to see what things we can let go of. These may be projects that you keep starting but that don’t feel true to your heart, or fears or limiting beliefs that are holding you back. The more you try to keep hold of everything that you might one day do, the more you feel as though you are failing when you look at what you have not accomplished. If these projects or goals don’t feel authentic to your true self, then letting them go will allow you to free up valuable space that you need in order to achieve things that feel more you.
Similarly, limiting beliefs are absolute goal-killers! Challenging yourself to letting these go could be one of the biggest factors in changing your life. Once you have released the fear or ‘story you are telling yourself’ about why you can’t do something, you can go out there and make your dreams a reality!
Hopefully, you’re now as convinced as we are that reviewing the past year is the first and best step you should take when thinking about New Year’s Resolutions. Create a safe and calming space, grab a journal and pen and review your year now before setting intentional goals for the new year and the new decade!
Let us know one thing you’re letting go of in the comments below and one goal you have for the new year!