6 Powerful Reflections for a Year in Review
It would be especially easy to jump into the new year without looking back. With excitement brewing for a new decade, we’re understandably eager to set new goals and start creating our task lists.
Before we rush too quickly into 2020, let’s take a moment to reflect on 2019—the highs, lows and the hilarious—and allow it to inform our intentions for the new year.
1. Examine & Probe
We know, we know. Reflecting on the past year is a given. But we challenge you to take it a step further and “probe” your ways, testing and examining your heart and mind, revealing areas where growth is needed.
Let us examine and probe our ways, And let us return to the LORD.
Did you give in to worry this year? Or lead in fear instead of love? Did you let your priorities go askew and you now need to regroup? Ask God to guide you in 2020!
Looking to grow? Check out 5 Goals to Unlock Growth in 2020.
2. Very Seriously Recall the Funny
It’s easy to have a laugh and then quickly jump back into the demands of your day. We know that a cheerful heart is good medicine (Proverbs 17:22), and those comedic moments bond a team, too. Here’s what Thrive Global has found:
Decades worth of studies demonstrate that humor can reduce anxiety, stress, depression and increase creativity, energy levels and productivity. Similarly, laughter boosts our immune system, decreases stress, and triggers a pleasing endorphin rush.
Do it for your health, both physical and mental: Can you recall at least one meme-worthy, hilarious moment of 2019?
3. Remember the Hurdles Jumped
When you’re in an industry that’s full of change and growth, challenges are inevitable. Think back to early 2019 when you were dreading a specific project, or searching for a solution to a difficult situation.
- How did you jump that hurdle?
- Who were your helpers and heroes?
- What resources did you discover to help resolve the challenge?
- What action steps are scalable to better accomplish similar challenges?
Consider your responses to these reflections your best toolkit that will serve you into the future.
Be encouraged and inspired with this downloadable graphic for non-profit leaders.
4. Acknowledge the Fails
Even though it’s more convenient to ignore the missteps, those experiences would be wasted learning opportunities if you didn’t lean into the discomfort and acknowledge the #fail. As spoken and exemplified by Thomas A. Edison:
“I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.”
Look back and examine a failure or two from 2019. If you’re feeling extra bold, ask a colleague or friend to give you some feedback on the subject.
5. Recall a High Moment
Don’t let the new year chime in without reflecting on your biggest accomplishments. If you had to time capsule one achievement of 2019, what would you write?
- Did your organization experience unprecedented online growth?
- Were you able to reach or exceed your sales or conversion goals for the year?
- Did your church see growth in targeted areas? Was there an uptick in attendance or a high percentage of attendees join small groups?
As leaders it’s easy to see all that still needs to be accomplished, but it’s important to remember and be encouraged by your achievements.
PRO TIP: Consider yourself an authority on the subject of this “time capsule” achievement. Use this position in your sector to grow your organization.
6. Practice Celebration
A common theme in the Scriptures is celebration. God’s people regularly planned and executed the spiritual discipline of celebration. Aside from the excitement, this practice ensured that stories of God’s goodness were shared from generation to generation.
Thinking back to your “time capsule” moment from 2019, will you resolve to practice the discipline of celebration? It can be as simple as grabbing some seltzer and kombucha for your staff and making a toast in the office, or going all out and planning a weekend brunch or group activity. Just remember to communicate what and why you’re celebrating.
I will tell of the Lord's unfailing love; I praise him for all he has done for us. He has richly blessed the people of Israel because of his mercy and constant love.
Isaiah 63:7 (GNT)
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Now that you’ve paid homage to the past year (you can apply these reflections to the decade, too!), you can thoughtfully set your intentions for 2020. Leave us a comment below and share with us your intentions for the new year.