Although living in the now and planning for the future is a mindset that generates success, ignoring the past and repeating the same mistakes is silly.

As this year takes its final breath, take some time and reflect on what went well and not so well this past twelve months. Ask directed questions and capture the answers. Invest time and contemplate how things can be different and hopefully better going forward into a new year.

Here are a few questions that I ask myself every December. I am a collector of notebooks and use a separate journal for this exercise. Then I can review my answers and thoughts periodically whenever I feel I’m stuck or getting off track.

What am I most grateful for in my life? How have I celebrated them?
What limiting beliefs blocked progress or achievement?
How could I overcome obstacles and instead see opportunity?
Who are my supporters?
What relationships are negative and deserve a goodbye?
What achievement am I most proud of this year?
What goals did I fail to complete and why?
What are ten significant things to achieve next year?
How will completing these stretch goals make me feel?
What steps do I need to plan and actions to take to begin each of the ten goals?
What’s at stake if I fail?
What results and benefits will occur with attaining each milestone and goal?
What behaviors and habits do I need to stop?
What are my key motivations and how can I reinforce them?
What resources do I have available that I fail to use?
What areas of my life and goals need more clarity?
What does a perfect day look like?

Invest in yourself and do this exercise to gain clarity, shift focus and reframe expectations about what you are capable of achieving. The science tells us that actually writing down the answers solidifies the mental framework for getting what we want.