30 Questions For Reviewing An Unusual Year

Nov 27, 2020 | Growth, Mindset & Identity

Tara McMullin is a writer, podcaster, and producer who explores what it takes to navigate the 21st-century economy with your humanity intact. Click here to support this work.

We have just about made it to the final month of 2020.

Which is the perfect time to look back on what you’ve created, what didn’t work out, and what you learned. And, it’s understandable if maybe that annual ritual is something you’re thinking about skipping this year.

How do you review a year like 2020?

It might be especially challenging to review the year if you suffered a big disappointment or set back. It might also be challenging to review it if some stupendous happened and you’re exhausted from trying to keep up.

Plus, so much of what happened was out of your control that you might think it’s futile to even check in with yourself.

But I’d like to argue that 2020 is exactly the kind of year that we need to review.

We have learned so much this year, experienced so much this year, grown so much this year–and I think we owe it to ourselves (and our businesses) to pause and recognize that.

That said, your usual annual review process might not fit the bill. (Or, maybe you don’t have an annual review process and you’d like one!)

Here are 30 questions you can use to review your year:

  1. What did I create?
  2. What felt unexpectedly easy or fun?
  3. What was the hardest part of this year? How did I meet that challenge?
  4. When did I feel masterful or skillful?
  5. What did I try to avoid?
  6. What did I learn about myself?
  7. How did I practice my values?
  8. What opportunities did I take advantage of?
  9. What did I learn about my business?
  10. How did I use my strengths?
  11. What new relationships emerged?
  12. How did I grow?
  13. What did I (or my business) move on from?
  14. Who supported me and my business?
  15. What habits, systems, or activities supported my wellness? The wellness of my business?
  16. Who did I support?
  17. What relationships faded?
  18. What did I say or do that really resonated with people? Why?
  19. When did I adapt to change with openness and grace?
  20. When did I respond to change with stubbornness or fear?
  21. What opportunities did I create for myself? For others?
  22. What beliefs did I change when presented with new information?
  23. When was I out of alignment with my values?
  24. How did I contribute to my community?
  25. How did I refuel myself?
  26. How has my vision evolved?
  27. What new habits did I cultivate?
  28. What habits did I break?
  29. When did I rest?
  30. What new things did I try?

Take time and care with these questions. Pick out a few and journal on them. Use one as a conversation starter at your next mastermind meeting. Take one out for a walk or a drive and let it really sink in.

Personally, I can’t review the year without flipping through a calendar to remind myself of the full passage of time!

Remember: these questions are not about judging your performance! They’re about reflecting and learning. So try to approach them with kindness for yourself and gratitude for the growth you’ve experienced this year. 💛

If you’d like to take your time with this review, I’ll be sharing one of these questions on Instagram every day in December. I’d love for you to share your answers and see how others are reflecting on the year, too. By the end of the month, you’ll have a better grasp on what happened this year and how you can lead yourself into 2021.

Click here to follow me and join the conversation!

Plus, be sure to tune into the What Works podcast throughout December to hear 4 small business owners reflect on the ups & downs of this unusual year and how they led themselves through it with grace.

What Works offers in-depth, well-researched content that strips away the hype of the 21st-century economy. Whether you love the podcast, the articles, or the Instagram content, we’d love your support