It’s the time of year when everyone is setting goals and planning for the future, but have you stopped to reflect upon the year prior?
Sometimes we’re so hyper-focused on our big goals that we DON’T stop to recognize what we’ve accomplished. How do you think about your goals? Do you think of them as overall successes or failures? Or do you recognize the small wins along the way?
We’re always moving a mile a minute here at the Academy, but our Leadership Team just wrapped up our 2-day Annual Planning meeting, and one of my favorite parts is slowing down and reviewing the previous quarter’s wins, as well as honoring the accomplishments from the overall year. We set big goals for 2021 and seeing that we met them and made significant progress on our stretch goals was incredibly satisfying and motivating for the coming year. We also shared notable achievements from each of our teams so we could collectively hear the wide variety of achievements that were accomplished. Of course, we’re already back at our desks ready to tackle 2022, but if we didn’t pause and share the fun moments, creative ideas, and true admiration we have for one another, we would be neglecting one of the most satisfying and energizing meetings we have as a team! We would be missing out on the celebration of our wins – big and small.
You might be thinking, ok that’s nice, but how does this apply to me? First, start by identifying what you have done and all the ways you’ve moved the needle on projects or ideas to a point where YOU to see the impact. When you look at the little things, it creates the opportunity for you to operate from a place of gratitude. When you see your wins, you can enjoy them! You deserve it and you should pat yourself on the back and feel good about it! But if you are constantly focused on the next horizon, the big goal or whatever it is that you are trying to accomplish – you won’t feel like you are getting anywhere, and over time it will drain your energy without you even realizing it.
How do you enjoy the small wins? I urge you to try the following exercise:
- Stop. Take a deep breath.
- Think of the accomplishments you’ve had in 2021.
- Don’t be overly critical, write down any thought that crosses your mind no matter how big or small. For example, did you stick to your calendar appointments? Did you make a lasting connection with a client? Did you finally close out a case or a project that lingered for far too long?
- Don’t solely focus on your work life, think about your personal life as well – did you finally go on a hike you’ve wanted to do for months? Did you splurge and get that fancy thing you’ve been saving up to buy? Did you get out of the office and take a vacation?
Now that you’ve dumped all the thoughts from your brain. Read them. Now read them again. And again.
Celebrate your wins! Better yet, invite your team to do the same thing and share your wins together. Let us know how it goes!
Director, Projects and Event Planning
American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc.
9444 Balboa Avenue, Suite 300
San Diego, California 92123
Phone: (858) 453-2128