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Looking Back to Get Ahead.

By December 12, 2017February 14th, 2019Articles, Leadership

back aheadI’m sitting in disbelief (and a little bit of relief if I am honest) that I am writing my final blog of the year! This year has flown past and now with the Christmas tree up and parties in full swing I get to take a little break from writing. Well, at least to my loyal readers!

Last week I wrote about the power of reflection. So over the past 2 weeks I have taken some of my own medicine. Last week, I dedicated a whole day to learning and reflection, getting clarity on what has worked, what needs to improve and what my key areas of focus will be for next year. The following day saw a couple of hours with my accountability partner working out the nitty gritty of what that meant and the actions I needed to take and then today I spent a couple of hours with my mentor honing in on the strategy, getting clear on priorities and processes to ensure things don’t fall through the cracks. So you could equate the time investment to two days. Did I have the time to do that during such a traditionally busy time? No. Could I afford not to make the time? No. Not if I want to be focused and effective heading into next year.

Peter Ducker said, “Follow effective action with quiet reflection. From the quiet reflection will come even more effective action”. If you’re anything like me, this year, particularly this quarter has been action packed, personally and professionally. So as we’re heading towards the finish line after a year of lots of action and your mind turns to sinking your feet into the sand or the fresh, clean air of a country escape where you can finally breathe, it could be a great time to think about how your actions can become even more effective.

We all have choices in how we approach our leadership, career and business. Too often I hear how people don’t have the time to do what they ‘should’ be doing to create their success, or they are too busy, or they don’t know what they want. I can certainly sit in that camp too; though I am certainly not one to be telling others how busy I am for obvious reasons (my book!). However, if you are to influence, stay relevant and be in control of the inevitable busyness that 2018 will bring you, you need to make wise choices now to enable you to start the year with a bang. If you’re downtime isn’t a good time to do this and you just want to completely switch off when will you do it?

There is no right or wrong in terms of timing and you may have already done this.
The trick is to ensure it gets done.

One suggestion I would make is to ensure you are including in your reflection how you have looked after you and how you will support yourself next year. We can be the first to compromise what’s important to us and for us, particularly when in leadership roles. You need to know where you get your energy from and what makes you feel good. Things aren’t going to slow down or get any easier, we need to get smarter and understand how we can adapt and fuel ourselves for success.

Thanks for your support this year and I hope through these weekly blogs you’ve got value and insights to help improve your leadership effectiveness. I’ve enjoyed your comments and having you part of my community.