Now is a great time to reflect back on the year you've just had.

And as you do that, I invite you to reflect on all your accomplishments and wins. You've had a lot of great wins this year and deserve to celebrate them.

But I don't want you to stop there because our accomplishments for the year are historical. They're looking backwards.

So in addition to celebrating them, which is really important, I also want you to reflect back and think about what you’ve learned this past year. What have you learned from the past and the present that's going to set you up for an even bigger and better future?

As I reflected on my own year, these are the three biggest things that I've learned.

1. Focus brings results

I learned this from one of the mastermind groups that I belong to. Left to my own devices, I have a tendency to get distracted by shiny objects. I love anything new and innovative.

I like to do 10 things at the same time but this often has me splashing around in the pool and not necessarily getting to the other side on the things that matter most.

So, this year I implemented focus.

I decided that I was going to focus on getting more speaking opportunities in the second half of the year. And once I worked on the clarity piece and started telling everybody what I was focusing on, I got a lot more speaking opportunities.

My team and I also decided to strategically focus on two big projects in the second half of the year and I’m so excited that they're both about to come to fruition in January because of our clarity and planning.

2. Appreciating people builds stronger relationships

I learned this from a second mastermind group that I belong to. I have a tendency to focus on the task at hand, on getting things done, and on achievement.

But this doesn't always serve me well because my family and friends, my team and colleagues don't always feel appreciated. They can sometimes feel like I'm just trying to get the task done and not paying attention to them.

This year, I’ve learned that appreciating people is extremely important. I’ve been more present and a better listener, and it’s helped me so much in building my relationships with my team.

I have started to notice and ask myself, “what is it that I do that drives them nuts?” And then work on not doing those things.

I've also learned that I can learn much more about the care and feeding of each of my team members. Guess what, they're all different! So, it's been eye-opening and very helpful.

3. Making things simple, easy, and fun

This year, I’ve realized how important making things simple, easy and fun is, especially for me and my team. I’m usually attracted to projects and ideas that are complex and challenging and then I power through them no matter how I feel.

But at one point this year, one of my team members was watching me “powering through” a task I was struggling with and he asked, “May, how can we make this simple, easy, and fun for you?” I immediately felt a weight lifted off my shoulders.

That's when I realized we can apply this to figuring out what we want to take on as a team by simply asking, “Is it simple, easy, and fun for us?” This also helped me stop procrastinating and get started on things by asking myself, “How can I start this in a way that’s going to be simple, easy, and fun?”

2 Common Themes

I noticed two common themes across these three big things that I learned this year:

  1. They’re all things that I learned from others. Listening leads to learning and learning from others really speeds up our progress.
  2. My learning in all three cases was from implementing and putting things in practice. You've got to take action to get results.

Make 2019 your best year ever

So, these were my areas of learning, but now it’s really about you. I want to help you make next year an even better year for you than this year, especially career-wise.

And that's why I'm so excited that I'm going to make a big announcement about my Career Mastery™ Kickstart Summit very soon. It’s going to help you get your year off to a great start. You're going to have a chance to learn from others and to implement those very actionable things that you're going to be learning. So, stay tuned!

As you reflect back on your year, what have you learned about yourself or the way you work that's going to set you up for an even better year next year?

Leave a comment, I'd love to know what the answer is for you.