Episode #15: Looking Back at 2019
Welcome to the fifteenth episode of The Strategy Corner. In this episode we are going to look back at 2019 and what you, the listener has accomplished and learned.
Join me as I begin the December Series on Planning for 2020 by taking a look back at 2019. In this episode I will share key questions to ask yourself to not only celebrate what you have accomplished in 2019, but begin to think how you want 2020 to be different. Come join me as we learn how you can Look Back at 2019 to help you decide how you want to move forward in 2020, LET’S TAKE ACTION!
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Hello, and welcome to episode number 15 of The Strategy Corner, where our goal is to get you to take action. I’m your host, Michelle Zink, the owner of Intentional Solutions Corp. Today’s episode, we’re looking back at 2019 to help you plan for 2020. All of December is devoted to helping you, my listener, plan, dream, and develop your 2020 plan. I talked a little bit about this in the last episode, but we’re going to take December of 2019 and truly look and figure out how we can prepare and plan the best 2020 for you.
To start the series, we’re going to begin by looking back at 2019. Why? Because looking back will help you take note of what you have accomplished, what you’ve learned, and help you create a roadmap for where you want to go. When looking back, you need to make sure you, number one, focus on one area of your life at a time where you think you have grown or changed in this particular area.
What I mean is, for example, the areas of your life that you need to focus on or you could focus on are work, family life, financial life, social life, mental health, physical health, but you could only choose one of them at a time to focus on. You can’t do… If you’re… Because we’re going to be going through a series of questions that you need to ask herself an answer, so you cannot answer these questions on work and family life at one time. You need to choose one of them.
If I were you, I would look at this list and think, “Out of 2019, where is one area that I feel like I saw the most growth and how I changed the most this year? Was that work? Was that family life? Was that financial life? Was that social life? Was it mental life? Was it physical life?” I would do that first is decide out of those areas which one do you think that you changed the most. That’s going to be the one you’re going to focus on first.
Once you have that one that you’re going to focus on first, you can always go back and do the other one after completing the first one. If, for example, when we talked about the areas and the examples of work, family life, financial life, social life, mental life, and physical health, you thought, “Well, there’s actually two here that I feel like I’ve gotten the most growth or I’ve changed the most,” know that you can answer these questions for any of these, so you can always do one, and then go back and do the other. That’s not a problem. You can have more that you want to focus on, but just doing one at a time.
Then you think about what didn’t exist but now exists because of your year when you’re thinking about the one that you’re focusing on. Doesn’t matter how much you actually accomplished but that you see the value in what you produce from a production standpoint, from a numbers and facts standpoint so you can learn from it, not so you can use it against you or make yourself feel less than, but from a standpoint where you can grow from it if you want and need to. What we’re doing is we’re creating this opportunity to go back and look at what we’ve created, but we’re doing it not from a shaming perspective, but from a perspective of facts.
Think about when you’re looking about your financial life, if you decide to focus on that one. When we talk about and we ask these questions, think about what you actually created. If you wanted to create and save $50,000, and you only did 20,000, it really helps you to know where you’re coming from and helps you to know the facts, not, again, so you can make yourself feel bad, but more so you know where you’re coming from. Remember, the value you create in any of these areas is your unique value, so please see the importance of you and your ability to continue to create.
These questions are here to gauge and develop you about your unique ability and what you uniquely want to create in your life. The questions are six questions, and you need to ask yourself each of these on one of the areas above. Remember, one at a time. Here they are. Number one, question number one, what did I create? Question number two, what lessons did I learn? Question number three, how have I changed this year? Question number four, if I could talk to myself one year ago, what would I say? Question number five, how will I use this to plan next year?
I’m going to repeat this for you one more time just to make sure that you have these written down and you’re ready to answer them. Question number one, what did I create this year? Number two, what lessons did I learn? Number three, how have I changed this year? Question number four, if I could talk to myself one year ago, what would I say? Finally, question number five, how will I use this to plan next year?
Now, I personally started off with my business, and then I moved to physical health. When I did my business lookback, it took me about an hour, and when I did my physical health, I allotted 15 minutes, so I didn’t have as much time on my hands to do the physical health, and I also knew there wasn’t as much meat in that as my business, so I allowed myself to do that in a quicker pace and just allotted 15 minutes. Then I knew that I needed more time for my business. That’s when I allowed myself to have an hour to actually dive in and really look at the learnings that I had.
Again, remember to focus on the facts no matter what they were. For instance, I wanted to lose weight this year, 2019. I had a number of mind, but I didn’t end up meeting it, but I documented exactly what I lost. I got to admit, initially it made me feel disappointed and questioning why couldn’t do it, but then I realized that I had a lot going on this year, and my main focus was business growth and that the number that I actually lost was an amazing number. I didn’t gain weight, so the reality is I did lose weight. It just wasn’t actually the number that I had.
It kind of made me remember back to when people say you have to create goals. It doesn’t really matter… The mattering isn’t in if you actually accomplish it a lot of times. It’s just if you actually went towards it. For instance, if I had a number to lose, 20 pounds, and I lost seven, that’s still movement towards my goal. That’s where when we talk about creating what you want to physically and actually create an 2020 where you have these goals where you might create some stretch goals, so you might say that you want to lose 20 pounds, but in reality, you only lose seven, is that good enough for you, or do you want to be more realistic? It’s really looking at that and realizing was the number I set realistic and how do I really want to think about that number. I decided to make the six or seven pounds that I lost to mean that I was a success because I didn’t gain any weight, and I was able to lose weight.
Now, with my business review, I saw everything I had created and was actually surprised at how much I actually created and saw how my revenue number was as large as I had predicted. Well, my revenue number wasn’t as large I predicted, but I had made a lot of traction towards it. Again, I saw, in this situation when I listed out everything that I created in my business, I was astonished as to all the things I actually produced, like a blog and a podcast and joining great organizations and things of that nature. When it came to my revenue number, even though I didn’t hit the number that I set, because I did set a pretty big number just pushing myself, kind of making it like a pie-in-the-sky because I really wanted to push myself this year, so I didn’t hit that, but I did make a lot of traction, and I did make a lot of strides towards that number.
When it comes to lessons learned, which is question number two, for my business, the lesson that I learned was is that the more comfortable I am in my shoes showing my authentic self, the easier it was to attract clients that align with me and my beliefs. I’m going to say that one more time. What I learned from lessons learned when it comes to my business is the more comfortable I am in my shoes showing my authentic self, the easier it was to attract clients that align with me and my beliefs.
Then when it comes to physical health, the lessons I learned was I can sit with an urge without giving into it. What that means, if no one knows in an urge is, that’s like when you walk by the break room and there’s cake inside, and even though you didn’t plan on having cake today, you do have an urge to go get some cake. You can either act on that urge and go in and get cake, or you can sit with it and let it kind of flow through your body and feel all the emotions that it creates, but being okay with you have a bigger purpose. You would like to stay healthy, or maybe you have a night out, so you want to make sure that you don’t eat too much. It overrides that urge and that moment of time for cake.
Now, question number three was how I have changed this year. When I think about my business, I realized that I’m not afraid to share my voice, and I created a blog and a podcast. In the past, I’ve been afraid to share my voice because I was afraid that I might offend someone or make someone feel uncomfortable. What I’m really excited about, one of my major changes in 2019 was that I’m now not afraid to share my voice and realizing that that, again, backs into the lessons I learned, that the more comfortable I am my shoes showing my authentic self. This podcast I’m talking on and the blog I created is really showing my authentic self. To me, that’s a big change in 2019 when it comes to business.
When it comes to physical health, the big change I saw was I listened to myself on what type of exercise my body needs at this point. I was doing Orangetheory Fitness, and I loved it, but I was realizing that every time I worked out, I was just exhausted at the end. With me creating a new business and going on my own, I really need to be in charge of my energy. When Pilates, Club Pilates rolled into town this year. I tried it out and loved it, but initially, I thought, “Well, that’s just not the high intensity workout I used to, so it’s not going to serve me,” but the more and more I went, the more I just realized I loved it and the less I wanted to go to Orangetheory.
Finally, what I did was I was honest with myself and realize, “You know what you really love Pilates. You want to go five times a week, if not six. Let’s just go all in on Pilates and let the Orangetheory go.” I had faith that I was going to enjoy it and that it was going to be the exercise I needed at this time. That was one thing that I’ve changed in 2019 when it came to my physical health.
Now, the next question, which was question number four, if I could talk to myself one year ago, what would I say, for my business… I know people are going to say, “Well, I’ve heard this before,” but for my business I said, “Don’t worry about it. It will all work out.” If I could talk to myself one year ago, I would say, “Don’t worry about it. It will all work out.” I’m sure everyone who’s listening has put pressure on themselves, has put doubt in their minds about their capacity and about their ability to create. When I was talking to myself and when I look back and think what could I say to myself a year ago, it’s “don’t worry, it will all work out.” For me that’s very comforting in knowing that it will all work out and it has worked out, and then I can take that confidence and move it towards 2020.
Now, when it comes to my physical health, if I could talk to myself one year ago, I would say, “You have the will and capacity to achieve all you put your mind to, but truly know you can only focus or go all in on one thing at a time.” This is one thing that I’m going to be talking about in future episodes in December about this one thing, and it’s really realizing that you can have a one thing that you’re focusing on that everything else aligns within it.
For me, and I just realized this, to be honest, like a couple months ago, so I’m new to this concept, and I’m new to leading into it, but having this one thing and knowing that my physical health will align with that because for me to be my best in my business, my physical health has to be its best, so knowing if I focus on creating a business and being amazing and being great at that, that my physical health will become an alignment with that. But again, I’m going to talk more about this as we go further into December.
Then the final question, which is number five, how will I use this to plan next year? For business, I will say things out loud to make it so. For example, last year I was on a trip with my sisters-in-laws, Olivia and Kim, and I… For some reason, we were doing something. We went to this house to like visit it. It was like a home tour. We were just talking about being creative and things of that nature. I just happen to blurt out that, “I want to create a podcast and a blog this year.”
Now, I don’t know where it came from. It was just we were in the energy of creating and talking about what we wanted to do in the future, and it came out. Well, I don’t know about you, but once I say it out loud, it puts it out there, and I actually move in motion to create it. Knowing that saying things out loud makes it so, I’m going to do that more. That’s just one example for my business.
Then how will I use this plan next year when it comes to physical health? Knowing that weight loss won’t be my one thing, but believing it will be a byproduct. Again, I’m going to dig into this whole one-thing later on this month, but I’m just going to repeat what I said. Knowing weight loss won’t be my one thing, but believing, that’s the big thing, believing it will be a byproduct. We’re going to get more into that, and you’ll understand what I’m talking about, but just know that’s really key to the learnings that I’ve been digging into and studying these last couple of months.
Then the final question is how do I want 2020 to be different? One thing that I’m realizing is, I forgot to add that on for number six was how do I want 2020 to be different? For me, in business, it’s I want to challenge myself to get more done in less time focusing on productivity. Then for physical health, I want to limit my drinking to two glasses of alcohol 90% of the time. Again, it’s I’m really trying to be good about my weight and about my health, and so limiting my alcohol intake will really help me to accomplish my health and my business goals faster.
Now it’s your turn, your call-to-action. Step number one is to set aside uninterrupted time to do this work. The second step is to decide on the one part of life you would like to focus on. Again, you could focus on work, family life, financial life, social life, mental health, physical health. Whichever one that you want to focus on first, that’s what you do, and then you answer these questions, which are number one, what did I create; number two, what lessons did I learn; number three, how have I changed this year; number four, if I could talk to myself one year ago, what would I say; number five, how will I use this to plan next year; and number six, how do I want 2020 to be different?
I’m going to say that one more time, especially since I messed up and forgot to include the sixth question. Here we go. Number one, what did I create? Number two, what lessons did I learn? Number three, how have I changed this year? Number four, if I could talk to myself one year ago, what would I say? Number five, how will I use this to plan next year? Number six, how do I want 2020 to be different?
Then you can move on and do another part of your life if you feel you’ve created change in growth in another area. Then my goal or my assignment for you, my challenge is for you guys to get this done in one week. I say one week because I want you to be ready to do the next assignment for next week. Again, every week in December, we’re going to be doing something towards creating an amazing 2020, and so I am going to have assignments for you. If you can go ahead and get this one done before next week, you’d be ahead of the game and can move on as we continue to grow and learn about how we can create an amazing 2020.
Remember, my goal is to get you ready for your strategy for 2020, and this work builds up that. The final thing is to have fun because all of this stuff is just going to be used as information to help us move forward and really dream about 2020. Please, remember to go to iTunes, Stitcher, Google play, and subscribe to The Strategy Corner. You can also go to my website, www.intentionalsolutionscorp.com and sign up to get my weekly blog post, which also has a link to the latest podcast. Until next time, remember, through action and growth, progression happens. Let’s take action together. Thank you, and create an amazing week.