Well, how did you do? Did you achieve all your 2016 goals?
Or did some of them get away from you?
As this year comes to an end, now is a great time to do a year-end goal review. I’m doing one myself, and I’ll share the process with you below. Doing this can help you learn from the goals you didn’t achieve this past year, and improve your chances of success in 2017.
This exercise can help you discover any errors you may have made in your thinking, planning, or execution processes.
Regarding any goals you left on the table in 2016, at this point it is what it is. The best thing we can do now is learn why it happened, so we can correct it.
As for myself, while I’m not thrilled about the fact that I didn’t achieve all of my goals. I really do believe that setting and achieving goals is a process. And like anything else in life, we get better at it the more we engage in it.
It’s ultimately about the personal growth and development we realize from the process, and less about the goal itself.
It’s important to think progress, not perfection.
We do however want to be sure we’re making as much progress as possible. And that we’re as focused, and as effective as we can be. Additionally, we want to ensure that we’re pushing ourselves well beyond our comfort zone.
Before I share the process of how to analyze and learn from the goals you didn’t achieve, I’d like you to do something else.
I’d like you to celebrate the goals you did achieve.
The achievement of any goal usually requires that we push through a whole slew of limiting beliefs, fears, doubts, etc. So, it’s important that we acknowledge those achievements. We want to be sure to celebrate our personal victories.
After that, work through the following process for the goals you didn’t realize:
- First, ask yourself, “Was this goal right for me? Was it in alignment with my overall life plan and what I want to achieve?” None of us has a ready-made blueprint we can use to create the life we want. First, we must determine what we want, then create the blueprint, and finally build from it. Because of the nature of the mind, and that fact that self-discovery is an ongoing process, setting goals leaves a lot of room for error. So, it’s helpful to step back from time-to-time and reflect on how our life is taking shape. Often-times a goal we set for ourselves isn’t really in alignment with what we ultimately want. So, we’ve got to ask ourselves if the micro-goals we’re pursuing at any given point in time, support the big-picture, or macro-goals, we want to realize?”
- If you determine the goal was right for you, then ask yourself, “Why didn’t I achieve it?” This is where you have to be brutally honest with yourself. Brainstorm all the possible reasons why you didn’t get the goal. Get it all out on paper, and look for specific reasons. This question will test just how badly you want it. The more you want it, the more honest you’ll be with yourself, and that’s important.
- After you’ve brainstormed all the possible reasons why you didn’t realize your goal, ask yourself, “How can I achieve this goal in 2017?” I love asking the question, “How can I?”. This powerful question helps us unlock the wisdom within us. I’m a firm believer that the ways and means to realize all the goals we want in life are within us. We simply need to bring those ways and means to a higher level of awareness. So, make a list of the specific things you can do in the coming year to realize more of your goals. Use this list to develop your new schedules, daily routines, and progress check-ins in the coming year.
Whenever I use the “How can I?” question, I always think of Swami Vivekananda. He was one of our greatest modern spiritual teachers. He reminded us that all power is within us.
All power is within you; you can do anything and everything. Believe in that, do not believe that you are weak; do not believe that you are half-crazy lunatics, as most of us do nowadays. You can do anything and everything, without even the guidance of any one. Stand up and express the divinity within you.” ~ Swami Vivekananda
So, that’s how to learn from the goals you didn’t achieve in 2016. I hope this process helps you to realize more of your goals in the coming year.
In the comments section below, I’d love to hear from you, and find out how you learn from your unrealized goals?
All the best! I hope you get off to a great start in the new year.