Review of the Year: What to Leave Behind and Carry Forward


I sat down and took a deep breathe. Dreaming and goal setting for the year is something I love to do.

But I felt overwhelmed as I sat down with my coffee and yellow pad.

So I started by looking back over 2018. And a smile stretched over my face. I started scribbling down, what went well. …enjoyed dates with my girls …read many good books …said “no” more often to be realistic. I enjoyed reflecting. I asked myself, “What were the challenges of the year?” And I winced and learned as I thought through those parts of the year too. As I continued with my review of the year, I got my stride and forgot my hesitation.

What about you? There are different ways to look back over the year. One friend of mind has her kids write what they are thankful for throughout the year and them read them back on New Years Day. That is a kind of review. Other people may sit and talk about memories of the year past.

Why should we care about a review of the year?

For you, last year may have been one that you would rather not look back on. There may have been some really hard parts. Or maybe last year did not seem like anything special to look back on. But here is what happens when we do a review of the year. We can:

-enjoy again the joys of the year

-learn from what happened during the year to fuel what we do this year

-see the beauty of how others or God impacted our lives.

-work through unfinished business from last year

-make more educated decisions about the new year

-see the whole picture of what took place during the year that we could not see up close.

Because let’s face it often times in the small moments of the year we can’t see anything but that moment. So moments that are dark and blurry look like this:

While other moments that seemed like nothing special, might have looked something like this to you:

But when we take the time to look back. We often can see more of the picture or even the big picture on some of the things that happened during the year. When we take a look at the big picture. We are able to see this:

Then what seemed so hard to look back on or like nothing special turns into a view of the masterpiece that happened last year. Yes, it might still be hard and maybe all of the pieces don’t seem masterful. But with a view of the whole we can gain appreciation for what happened in the year and information to help us see where to move and how to be in the year in front of us.

How do we go about doing it?

If you are interested in doing a review like this, download my free review of the year worksheet below. And let me know what you find out.

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