10 Questions to review your year

Studying how YOU work will be the most helpful learning you’ll ever do!

Want the secret shortcut to success and fulfillment? Figure out what works for YOU – and then do more of it.

Here are 10 sneaky and uplifting questions to help you do that.

I’ve arranged these in 2 sets of 5.

The first 5 are about noticing your wins and celebrating. (Something some of us need to do more often!)

The second set of 5 are about analyzing HOW we got to these wins. (So that we can do it again!)

You can set aside a few hours of deep reflection and do these all at once…or you can take a couple of weeks and focus on one question per day.

I’ve written these as a year end review, but you can do this reflection any time!

5 Questions for Celebrating your Wins

We don’t celebrate our wins enough! Achieving goals is great…but what we really need to celebrate is the actions we take to get there.

How are you creating the garden of your business and planting the seeds?

1. What project(s) did you complete last year?

A project is a “one off” – when it’s done, it’s done. They can be personal or business.

Projects don’t have to be huge!

Writing a sales page is a project. Creating a website is a project. Making a new service offer or program. Cleaning out your garage is a project!

Pro tip: mine your memory first…then flip back through your calendar or notes or planner.

Make a list of ALL the projects you completed last year. Big or small…celebrate them all!

2. What new practices or habits did you install?

Look closely and you’ll find LOTS of habits! Flossing = habit. Brushing teeth = habit. Putting on socks = habit.

Practices happen on a regular basis. They’re habits or regularly scheduled activities. Business or personal.

Doing a weekly review is a practice. Contacting 5 people every week is a practice. Flossing every day is a practice!

Pro tip: look at what you’re doing today. This week. What are those activities that you do (almost) without thinking?

List your habits and practices. Confirm to yourself that YES…you ARE capable of doing things consistently!

3. What are the highlights of your year?

These don’t have to be big events or breakthroughs. What were the magic moments? The first things that come to mind when you reflect on the year looking for positives. Business and personal.

Giving a presentation could be a highlight. Signing a wonderful new client. Adopting a pet. A deep conversation with someone special. That day when you stood still for a while to take in the sunset.

Pro tip: this can be turned into a gratitude practice – what was the highlight of your day or week?

List your highlights. Reflect on them and smile.

4. Who did you meet this year?

Who did you add to your business or social network? Clients, referral partners, teachers/mentors, friends. Who is in your life now that wasn’t in your life last year at this time?

Check your calendar, scan your emails

List your new contacts. Take a moment to reflect on the size of your network (each of those people knows 250+ people!) and the qualities that make these people special.

Bonus Challenge: pick one and send them a note of appreciation.

5. What is something you intentionally learned this year?

Dogs of all ages can learn new tricks!

We’ll talk about accidental learning through experience in the next section…this question is about *intentional* learning – setting out to learn something, then following through.

Did you pick up a new skill? Learn how to use a new piece of software? Cook a new recipe? Take a course?

What do you know now that you didn’t know a year ago?

List your learnings. Take a moment to appreciate how you are a smarter you than you were a year ago!

5 Questions for analyzing and learning about yourself

YOU-Shaped business owners tend to be creative and we may struggle with making plans and/or sticking to them.

The key is to figure out how you tick, then arrange your biz and life to work WITH you (in whatever weird way that might be) instead of trying to (once again) fit yourself into a box/program/system that works for someone else. (Saying this as someone with an enormous stack of dusty “planners” that sounded like a good idea at the time, but I never used past Jan 3rd…if I even wrote in them at all!)

In this section, you’ll build on the previous celebration questions.

1. What made your projects succeed?

This is what I got when I searched for “shortcut” – not sure what it means. Click this button to see cute pet pictures? I’d like that feature!

Look at the projects you completed in celebration #1. What helped you finish them? How did you plan? How did you make yourself do the work?

Did you create a plan or checklist? Did you “trick yourself” in some clever way? Did you enlist a coach or accountability partner? Give yourself a reward?

Did you do it bit by bit – or did you race through in a single marathon session or weekend?

Make notes about what worked. Look for patterns. How can you use these insights with your next project?

2. What made your practices succeed?

Look at your new habits from celebration #2. How did you get into the groove? What made you decide to do it? How did you keep going? How did you not forget or “fall off the wagon”?

Did you post reminders? Put it in your schedule? Write it on your bathroom mirror in lipstick? Tie it into an existing habit? Work with a coach or accountability buddy?

Make notes about what worked. Look for patterns. How can you use these insights for the next habit you want to develop?

3. What made the magical moment…magical?

Review your magic moments from celebration #3. What made them memorable/magical/special?

Was it who you were with? Was it a personal victory or personal best? A location? Something else unusual? Or was it just that you were present? Afraid or nervous?

Write down the elements of magical moments for YOU. How can you create more of them?

4. How and where did you meet new people?

Review your list of new clients and connections. Where did they come from? How did you meet them? Did you initiate the connection or respond to their connection request?

Specific events? Marketing initiatives? Referral connections?

What works best for YOU when it comes to expanding your network?

5. What makes learning fun, easy, doable for you?

The ability to learn new skills is must-have in a world full of rapid change.

Take a look at the things you learned this year. How did you do that learning? What made it stick? What made YOU stick to course/program/project?

Did you take a structured course or go the “do it yourself” route? Did you attend a class or learn online? Did you learn 1:1 with a coach or teacher? What course format worked best: audio/video/live, shorter periods of time or longer?

The more you learn about yourself…the less confused you’ll be!

Bonus points: did you sign up for courses/programs/buy books that you did NOT complete or learn from? Why not? (Be gentle with yourself here…this is an opportunity to learn from these investments…even if it wasn’t how you intended!)

Take note of how YOU learn best. You can turn this into a checklist or “spec sheet” that you can refer to next time you’re considering signing up for a course or program.

Next Steps: put this intel to work for you!

Congratulations! You have some seriously good insights into what makes YOU tick.

You can use these insights to:

  • Adjust your plans and schedule to work better for you
  • “Trick” yourself into getting things done
  • Create more magic and fulfillment in your day-to-day life
  • Make better decisions about what to say YES to (and what to say NO to)
  • Intentionally and (relatively) easily grow your network, learn new things and install new habits

This exercise also happens to be the pre-work for our YOU-Shaped business design and planning course. We’ll be using these insights to help you create a business that fits YOU perfectly – along with a plan you can actually follow. Learn more here: Business Design and Planning Course