Without us realizing is December again.  The time when most of us are rushing to finish up projects to enjoy some deserved time off during the holiday season.

In many organizations, it is common practice to evaluate what has been achieved and set new goals for the next year.

But what about us? Shouldn’t we evaluate what have we done this year as well to improve our performance next year?

It does not take a lot of time, but it does require a couple of hours of your attention so you can have a good view of where you are and where you want to go next year.  Just answer the following questions

1. What went well?

In a fast-paced world, it is easier to forget what we have accomplished. We tend to look at our failures rather than our successes, when in fact this should be the starting point.  What are you proud of? What are your biggest wins for this year?

Reflecting on this helps you build confidence, and this my friend,  it is the stepping stone for self-improvement.

Write down 5-10 things that you are proud of.  You can take it to the next level by categorizing these achievements in the different dimensions of life: Career, Friends and Family, Hobbies, Finances, Relationships, Health, Personal Development, and Significant other.

2. What didn’t go well?

Sometimes things do not go according to plan.  Life happens and there are challenges along the way.  So it helps to be aware of what were the roadblocks that we encountered, so we can design a plan to overcome them in the future.

This is what personal growth is all about.  Here we will start reflecting on the things that did not go so well, and what were the reasons behind it. Take it a step further and reflect on that disappointment and how it made you feel.  The last part is the one that will inspire you to make the changes needed next year.

3. What did you learn?

Now that you have reviewed the successes and stumbles of this year, it is time to reflect on the lessons learned.  Challenge yourself to write at least 5 important lessons or AHA moments you might have had along the way.

What do these lessons ignite in you? What do you want to do differently next year? What do you want to stop, and where do you want to grow?

Once you have finished this exercise you are ready for the next step.  Setting up the goals for next year.  Make sure you check out the article Goal Setting: 7 steps to creating and achieving your goals, for a bulletproof method to get what you want.

DOWNLOAD below the FREE template to start your end-of-year self-Assessment