Creating 2023, Part 1: The Year End Review

Written by:
Jessica Gowen
December 1, 2022

The new year is right around the corner. Have you carved out time to set your intentions for 2023? 

The last week of the year is my favorite time to reflect and to cast a vision for how I want the new year to look and feel. More than simply reflecting and dreaming, I like to use this time to create a plan for the year ahead. 

I’m not a fan of New Year’s Resolutions. As they say, resolutions are made to be broken. I am, however, deeply committed to taking aligned action to actively create the life I want. And the change in the year is a natural pause point to reflect on the year that has passed and prepare for the year ahead. 

This week, I’m sharing the first step I take in that process: a year end review. I try to do mine a couple of weeks prior to the New Year so when I turn to setting my intentions closer to the actual holiday, I am grounded in what has been.

In a perfect world, year-end reviews would happen in a cozy spot in a beautiful setting and endless available time. In real life, however, I try to grab an hour in the early morning before my kids are up and the day gets busy. 

“Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good” and “done is better than perfect” are my mantras for this and most other activities!

Here’s what you need for a year end review: 

- A notebook/pen or your computer (or both)

- Your journal or any other mechanism for tracking your days

- Your 2022 goals, if you wrote them down

- An hour of uninterrupted time: no phone, kids, social media, TV

- Music, if it helps you focus. (I love the focus music on the Headspace app or a binaural beat app) 

- Anything other physical comforts that will set your mood for reflection (I like to sit in front of the fire and my Christmas tree with a cup of coffee.)

To do your review, answer these questions: 

1. Make a list of all of your domains/roles: personal, professional, home, family, relationships, health, spirituality, service, learning/personal development.

2. In each domain, what are your wins for this year? What brought you joy this year? In what roles or experiences did you feel most successful or fulfilled? Where did you have a positive impact?

3. Do you notice any common threads in your wins or sources of joy? Can you identify one win about which you are most proud of yourself? How have you celebrated that accomplishment? If you haven’t, how will you celebrate it?

4. Think about your habits and routines. If you had to identify three ways you currently spend your time that you know helped you get your wins, what would they be? For each, would you like to continue these habits and routines in the new year?

5. For each of the domains above, what is one thing that could have gone better? Are there any habits, activities or routines you engaged in during 2022 that would like to stop doing in 2023?

6. If you have 2022 goals written down somewhere, review them. For each one: did you attain it? If so, what factors made you successful? If not, what factors impeded your progress? Do you notice any themes? Are the wins you identified above aligned with your goals?

Join me in this reflection process by scheduling an hour in the next few days for this look back at 2022. Next week I’ll be sharing more about the second step in this process: vision casting. In the meantime, I’d love to hear about your wins! 

Disclaimer:  The views expressed in this article are based on the opinion of the author, unless otherwise noted, and should not be taken as personal medical advice. The information provided is intended to help readers make their own informed health and wellness decisions.

Jessica Gowen

VP Performance Development
Jessica Gowen leads the performance side of Activcore as Vice President of Performance Development. She works at the Activcore studio in Atlanta, Georgia, located just 2 miles from Emory University. A passionate entrepreneur, Jessica joined Activcore to further develop professionally as an industry leader in the Atlanta area, and to grow her online performance offerings on a national scale. 


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