The New Year is here and now is the perfect time to re-assess your life trajectory and get your priorities in order by carrying-out an honest self-appraisal of your personal and professional life.
Take some time out before you launch headlong back into work this year.
Clear out your mental cobwebs and get your head straight, declutter your to-do lists, identify areas in your life which can benefit from a change of approach, and most importantly, figure out what’s working well for you, as well as what’s not. Then, after proper reflection, use the insight you’ve gleaned to decide how to best proceed in 2016.
"Setting goals requires a baseline, and a year-end review is a perfect mechanism to track progress, review your accomplishments, challenges, opportunities, and events from the prior year,” advises Lori Scherwin, founder of management consulting company Strategize That.
Look back on the previous year and scour over your old reports, meeting and calendar notes to help refresh your memory.
Note down all the chief events which took place in both your personal and professional life to get a clear snapshot of what you have accomplished. Separate these major events into appropriate categories. For example, you could group your events into sections such as: teamwork, leadership, work projects, presentations, and personal achievements.
You should also note down any new skills you have acquired, or existing skills you’ve honed over 2015.
Now that all your major events have been accounted for, it’s time to evaluate yourself, appraise your performance and give yourself some feedback.
When it comes to self-reflection, achieving objectivity is difficult as we are all plagued with personal biases. Try to be conscious of when you venture into less than objective territory and pull yourself back into line, try to remain fair, critical, and honest when deliberating over what you did well and what you could have done better. Personal growth requires a discerning eye and a willingness to acknowledge your own shortcomings.
At this juncture you should also ascribe a ranking to each of your skills. For instance, a ranking of 1 would mean the skill in question needs improvement, whereas a ranking of 5 means you have it down-pat.