12/31/2021 2 Comments
It's hard to believe that another year is about to come to an end. Where does the time go?
In past years, I've practiced a variety of end of year rituals that include creating a vision board, choosing a word of the year, and setting traditional resolutions, just to name a few.
While each practice provided some value, none of them seemed to provide the consistency of habits I I needed to stay on track with my goals throughout the year.
If you are leading a busy life, you know how easy it is to have your best-laid plans derailed by unexpected life events and increasing personal and professional responsibilities.
This year, I decided to take a new approach and created a simple 3-step process to set myself up for sustained success in 2022.
STEP 1: REFLECT
In this first step, you're encouraged to pause and look back over the year as you prepare to say goodbye.
What worked well this year?Include positive highlights, accomplishments, wins and celebrations. Include stepping stones and milestones towards career and life goals. Awareness of these things is important because you may want to maintain them in the coming year.
*Tip: If you haven’t already, this is a good time to create your positive praise folder.
What didn’t work as well as you would have liked?
These are usually the things you hear yourself complain about; the things that cause you pain or that you wish were different. Understanding what’s not working will inform what you want in the coming year.
*Tip: Honor your failures, the obstacles you’ve overcome and the lessons you’ve learned. Write down the most important insights and lessons you’ve learned that you want to carry with you into the new year.
What was missing?
Think back over the year and identify what could have made life simpler, easier and/or more meaningful. Examples include more down time, more frequent contact with loved ones or friends, or written focused career/life goals, just to name a few.
STEP 2: RE-CENTER
We often spend time thinking about the past or focused on a future that has yet to come. This step encourages you to simply be present to what is here for you right now in this moment...in this season of life.
What’s most present for you now?
Now that you’ve looked back over the past year, take a few moments to be still and tune in to what is present for you right now. What thoughts are you noticing as you reflect on 2021? What feelings are you experiencing? It may help to close your eyes to minimize visual stimuli as you turn your attention inward.
*Tip: It sometimes helps to simply start by noticing your breath. Set a timer for 5 minutes. Focus on the in-breath and the out-breath, where are you sensing the breath the most? And then scan your body starting from the top of your head, making your way down towards your feet. Check in with your body to see if there are any areas where you’re holding tension – clenched jaw, raised shoulders, tight neck muscles, etc. Pay attention to the thoughts that come and go. Notice where you may be feeling emotion in your body. This is a good practice to tune into inner wisdom messages.
STEP 3: RE-ALIGN
Now that you're more in touch with what matters most to you, this final step allows you to proactively plan the year to bring you closer to living a life centered around your priorities.
What are your intentions for the coming year?
Based on what you’ve learned from reflecting and re-centering above, schedule time to set powerful intentions to guide you to live a life aligned with what matters most to you. Be specific, don’t edit yourself and don’t be afraid to dream beyond what you think is possible.
Answer the questions below to help you set your intentions for 2022.
Remember to set aside time to go through the process above. Keep it simple and don't over-complicate it.
I encourage you to write down your intentions and keep them visible where they will stay top of mind. Review your progress regularly; I recommend weekly, but quarterly at a minimum. This will help you to see your progress, identify where you may be off-track and adjust your plan accordingly.
Find support and accountability to ensure your success. Tell a friend or family member, find a trusted advisor, coach or mentor to help you make forward progress and overcome unexpected obstacles.
If you use the end of ritual outlined above, let me know how it goes for you by sharing in the comments below.
May you find more of what your heart desires in life and career in the coming year and beyond!
The Physician Career Path Reimagined
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