Make a list of the top 5 things that went right.
Think about them critically. What about them was right? How did they come together? Who were you working with? What else was going on that could have contributed to them being so successful?
Make a list of the top 5 things that were completely wrong.
It’s harder to think about this critically. I often ask for input from others here. Objective feedback is key. The emotions we tie into what we perceive as failure can often be the hardest thing to work through. Also, we are very often our own worst critics. Maybe it wasn’t nearly as bad as we thought and just one little tweak here or there would change this item from being on the went wrong list to the went right list.
If you put an item in the “went right” area take a few minutes and look at what went wrong. Nothing is ever perfect. What could you have done to make it better? Do the same for the what went wrong items. Some parts of it had to have gone right. What did you learn or what went well that you can use in the future? You’be surprised how often you learned a solution to a problem and never thought to apply it!
Choose your top 3 goals to focus on.
Know where you want to go. Then, figure out how to get there. Use the what went right and what went wrong in your last year. Having the items written down so you can actually look at them helps your brain compute differently. We are visual creatures. You’ll make connections that you wouldn’t otherwise. Maybe there are small aspects of the what went right items that could revolutionize your what went wrong items.
Any time I start a project I do this. Taking the time to evaluate helps your productivity. Don’t waste time re-learning a lesson you have already learned because you let it slip your mind for a moment. You don’t have to have a daily or weekly journal to make your lessons stick. An hour or two of reflection and processing before you take on something new or move forward can be enough.