Looking back on 2019

A wooden dock and boat with a lone pair of sandals. Over the sea at sunset.

Hi everyone

So 2019 whizzed by at lightning speed didn’t it! It was an interesting and challenging year for many people with a a fair bit of up hill down dale motion. It feels like only yesterday I was thinking about my goals for 2019 and here we are charting our course for 2020. A lot has happened, some of it positive, some a bit meh and whatever for most of us I’m sure.

For this reason, before plunging into the fresh waters of 2020, it might be helpful to pause and reflect on what went well in 2019 and what could have been better. I usually haul out my diary and do a spot of navel-gazing. Did I get some things right and others not? What about you? Did you tick off a few goals here and there, or did the year unfold in a completely unexpected way? Yep, that happens….

In the spirit of being creative, I came up with a few questions that might or might not be useful to help this thinking process along:


1. Resist

What goals did you resist doing? This is useful information to uncover because either they weren’t really things that resonated with you, or they were so important that you got scared of them. Resistance is also a sign of something going on subconsciously around a particular issue, so do a spot of analysis to get some insight.

For example: If you wanted to find a new job that gave you more satisfaction and you didn’t do this – why do you think it didn’t happen?

Perhaps do some thinking about this and work out if it’s something you feel you should do, or, take it off the list. If it is still a valuable goal, take a step towards it at the start of 2020. Do something about it right away.

2. Embrace

What did you embrace doing wholeheartedly? If there was something that was easy to do, that flowed without too much effort, then it probably aligned very closely with your values. Try and do more of these types of things as they make your heart sing and will give you the most satisfaction and reward!

For example: Perhaps you were keen to do more volunteer work as a goal and this happened quite easily. You found yourself making time for it and enjoyed the whole concept from start to finish.

Create more goals like this that match your core values and make them the theme of your 2020 vision.

3. Fear

What did you fear doing? Was there something that scared you? We all fear change to varying degrees because there’s the potential to fail. If you stepped back from the edge of doing something hard or scary, it’s important to understand why.

For example: A 2019 goal was to apply for a promotion within your current organisation. Every month you promised yourself you would do it but it never happened. What’s going on here?

If this goal is very important to you, why do you think it didn’t come to fruition? Maybe you didn’t have the confidence to go for it, or on some level, you felt that you didn’t deserve it. Work with a coach or find a course online that can help with your confidence levels or address self-esteem issues. Do something about this in January 2020.

4. Love

Who did you love spending time with – friends, colleagues and family? Think about the people who enhanced your life and made you feel good about yourself.

For example: Did you have regular catch-ups with a network of friends who supported and validated you without judgement?

Try and ensure you create more of these types of connections and less of the draining, negative ones. Fill your social and personal life with people who have your best interests at heart and you reciprocate the same.

5. Educate

What did you learn this year? Were there any light-bulb moments? Personal growth is fun and the more you practice it the better it gets. Plus, it gives you something to work towards while understanding that you’re ok as you are right at this moment.

For example: Did you follow a new blogger who was very interesting or attend courses or conferences that gave you a buzz?

Dr Stephen Covey talked about sharpening the saw in his book, ‘The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People’. Growth, change and constant improvement is a must if you desire a fulfilled life. Create a few more goals in 2020 that will guide you along this path.

6. Conquer

What obstacles did you conquer this year? Were there things that have been impeding your path to success that you moved aside and if so, how did you do this?

For example: Maybe your goal was to kick the smoking habit or eat healthier. This year you got it right! Yay, well done you. Can you think what you did mentally to achieve this after perhaps years of trying?

When a particular mindset has led to success, it’s important to replicate the ways of thinking that helped you achieve your goals. Understanding what worked this time is crucial for achieving your 2020 goals. Take what you did and practice it over and over again until it’s a habit.

7. Try

What did you try even though it was hard? Where were you brave and undaunted? Even though you might not have been successful, taking that step forward must be acknowledged and rewarded.

For example: A goal was to enter into a relationship with a new partner. After dating a lot and being open and vulnerable, nothing developed into something wonderful and meaningful. This is disappointing but ok.

Try and take what you learnt from these dates and get back out there, having more fun and less stress. Yes, you might not have a new relationship but you tried and that’s worthy of patting yourself on the back. Create a magic life for yourself on your own and then someone will want to be a part of it!

Take care and be kind to each other

Janine x

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