Did you review 2015? It isn't too late... here's how
Jennifer, here. I'm going to admit, right after the holidays, it was a struggle for me to get back into work and I'm only just now feeling like I'm back in the swing of things. I took a week off for Christmas to spend time with family and after that, it was hard to get back into the work mindset. But then, I realized that it’s because I haven’t given myself the time to rest and reflect on last year. I needed to take the time to clean out my closets and make piles for Goodwill. I needed to sit on the couch and watch trash TV. I needed to be still and reflect and have some closure on last year before I finalized my plans for 2016.
Most of us don’t review what we did in the past. We are always thinking about the future, thinking about what we will accomplish, and making plans. We spend a lot of time forward facing, and that SHARPLY contrasts what we do to review for our business -- which is usually nothing.
For me, I have a Strengths Finder top 5 of “Achiever” and one of my weaknesses is that I never celebrate what I achieve. I check it off the list really fast and move on without taking the time to celebrate my wins. It’s super important to celebrate those wins. If we don’t celebrate it, we’ll never understand how far we’ve come. We need to think about what significant things we’ve done and what significant things we need to change for 2016!
I believe that reflecting and celebrating your business is what makes the difference between someone who thinks of themselves as the CEO and founder of their creative business versus someone who is just getting things done. This mindset shift is very important as your business starts to grow.
Before you finalize your goals for 2016, you need to review 2015. You are not too busy to do this!
To help you, I created a BRAND NEW set of worksheets for you.You can download them by going to stationeryacademy.com/yearendreview
I’ve broken down the worksheets into 4 parts:
Part 1 - Review You
Part 2 - Review Business
Part 3 - Review Stats
Part 4 - Review Tasks
Each of these worksheets will prompt you to reflect on 2015. I think it’s important to look at our own personal growth so we can see how far we’ve come in the last 12 months both emotionally and in our business. Reflecting on the last year will help you to clarify what your goals are for 2016 and in doing these worksheets, you will likely uncover some things that you need to shift.
Part 1 - Review You
The first worksheet is reviewing you. This worksheet will prompt you to think about yourself and your growth as a business owner. On this worksheet, I want you to answer the questions about your business, not about you personally. For example, it asks, “Where were your most valuable relationships?” For me, I feel like my best relationships were those that I developed outside of the internet. I had to get off the internet and interact with people in person. I had coffee, attended 2 Mastermind Retreats, and just talked with people. This has made a HUGE difference for me.
Maybe you need to look through your calendar or planner to jog your memory. When I did that, I found I started 2015 with my goal setting worksheets (you’ll also be able to download these worksheets also when you sign up for our newsletter). Those sheets made a huge difference in my productivity. I was able to create tangible, executable, and measurable tasks.
The worksheet also asks what was the most challenging this year. For me, it was launching my online course Creative’s Academy. It was a huge undertaking, but this will also go under another question on the worksheet, which asks what your 3 biggest wins are.
It’s REALLY important that you celebrate and reflect. Don’t let yourself jump into 2016 without some closure and reflection on 2015.
Part 2 - Review Your Business
What I want you to do in this part is to write down everything you’ve produced this year. For example, if you are a blogger, write down all of the posts you’ve written. Write down everything you’ve done this year. When you’re finished, you’ll be able to celebrate everything you’ve done and toast to a great year! It’s important to review what you’ve done so that you can see how far you’ve come.
Part 3 - Review Stats
This part will most likely require more time. I want you to take the time to see how you can measure your success by looking back at 2015, and possibly even 2014. The worksheets will list what you are measuring, have a space for the number in 2015 and 2014 (if you have those), and then will have a space for your 2016 action steps. This list will be different for everyone.
Think about things like the number of clients you had, what is an item you are most proud of, where did you spend most of your time, the number of followers on social media that you have. Then, fill in those numbers on the sheet. When you look at the numbers, you will see what you want to change, what you want to do more of, what you want to differently, and even what you want to stop doing in 2016.
What was your favorite thing to do? Is that favorite thing making an impact? What was your least favorite thing to do and was THAT making an impact? What went well, what didn’t go well? Write them down so that you can have something to measure for 2016.
Part 4 - Review Tasks
This part is like a CEO checklist. I want you to take time to review things you do throughout the year. Viewing it written down will change some things for you. Write down all the things you do--do you blog, update social media, create email newsletters, technical support, do you spend time designing, do you work on trade show or craft show preparation? Once you have it all written down, figure out a system to organize your list so that you can see where you need help, where you spend the most time, where you want to stop, and what you want to do more of. I want you to take a look at these items and go back to the Part 3 Worksheet and see where you had the most impact. That will help you to figure out your priorities for 2016 and see where you need to spend most of your time.
You can download these at stationeryacademy.com/yearendreview.
These things should also align with your mission and values, and should give you a good start and a measurable plan for 2016.
After you complete this, I think you’ll be able to have confidence in your 2016 goals!
[author] [author_image timthumb='on']http://www.stationeryacademy.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/Jennifer-Faught-Stationery-Academy.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]This post was written by Stationery Academy owner/president, Jennifer Faught. Sign up for our emails to get even more delightful surprises from us every other week. [/author_info] [/author]
PS: We’d love to hear how this worked for you. Tag us on Instagram using #statacad and let us see what you’re accomplishing and celebrating in 2016.
PPS: See what our alums are up to after attending Stationery Academy. This month, we’re featuring Maghon Taylor from All She Wrote Notes. Read all about her journey here.