2019 annual reflection review: part 1, 2, 3, 415 Mar 2019
i realized yesterday that i hadn’t written much about my annual reflection process. i wrote one post but it’s more notes for me than anything. it’s time to say some more, especially since that maureen and i are planning an annual retreat called 2020vision for next year (more info coming soon on that so email me if you’re interested).
i don’t know if i’ll end up writing five posts about it like i did last year, but right now i’m feeling the desire to break my thoughts up into process and content. i think for now i’ll just “bullet” things and maybe do more narrative weaving later.
this year, it worked out for me to rent a friend’s apartment while he was traveling. ideally, i would have gone away from the city but this situation was just working out too well. my dream is to go away to a beautiful, quiet, natural place for my annual reflection retreat and the minimum requirement is that i just not be at home. i need to be in a different space so that i don’t/can’t get distracted by little things that break up my spaciousness (like chores i’ve put off for a long time and now that i have four days, decide to do and eat up hours of my reflecting time). it’s just a bonus if the space is beautiful and natural.
around october 2018, i picked my retreat dates. that’s the point at which i had enough clarity about what my january was going to look like to feel good about choosing dates.
i started building a list of things to do in my phone/computer apple notes app basically as soon as i finished my retreat (january 2018 when i reflected on 2017). as i thought of or saw ideas for activities to do on retreat that would be helpful to my reflecting and planning, i added them to the notes file. i knew that this would create more things to do than i could ever have time for, but i wanted to have a full menu of things to chose from.
the week before my retreat, i started to narrow down what things i felt needed to get done on retreat, what things would be nice to do, and what things just probably wouldn’t happen.
—[end writing 15 march]—
—[begin writing 16 march]—
- i packed up the day before just as if i was going on a trip. full suitcase and everything. i committed to not going home because that felt important to hold the container for myself.
- i had a MASSIVE list of activities to choose from. i knew it couldn’t possibly finish it all, but that wasn’t the point. at the time of the retreat, i didn’t have them categorized but in hindsight, i think the categories (each of which may have had 1-15 specific tasks) were:
- review time spent
- review money spent
- review my systems, tools, and frameworks (bullet journal, calendar systems, friend zones, etc)
- cleaning and maintenance of said systems
- plan for personal and professional development
- plan for community engagement
- build my shadow calendar (which includes making phone calls to my zone 1 folks)
- ideate and launch projects i have been blocked on
- update protocols and practices based on everything implemented so far
—[end writing mar 16]—
—[begin writing mar 17]—
what i actually did
so based on all the categories above and subtasks under each, here’s a rundown of what i actually did. “did” in this context includes things i completed as well as tasks i started and didn’t complete. i include time estimates because i think it’s helpful info. but note they are actually estimates.
- review time spent
- my (at this point) standard calendar review process (see “part 1: review and reflect” of this post) (8h)
- review money spent (3h)
- review systems, tools, and functional life frameworks (2h)
- review time spent
- reflect on vision and values statement (where am i living into it? where am i not yet?) (2h + all over the place)
- bullet journal (3h)
- update friend zones (2h)
- create new shadow calendar (4h)
- plan for community engagement (6h)
- ideate and launch new or previously blocked projects
- personal and professional development (3h)
- scheduling two book editing weeks
- scoping meditation retreats and other retreats
- researching trainings
- update protocols and practices (1h)
- budget (1h)
—[end march 17 writing]—
—[begin march 21 writing]—
and some just some reflections on the process as a whole this year.
- the amount of money i spent on housing for the retreat. the ratio of getting what i needed to what i spent felt great.
- how many community engaging things i took some steps towards making happened. the list is actually quite epic:
- men’s circle (bell hooks six elements of love?) (lead)
- moon circles (lead)
- 1:1s w/ one teacher (participant)
- post-patriarchy futures (co-lead)
- big talk x msg (co-lead)
- queer movie night (co-lead)
- dusp ptop #2 (potential facilitator)
- the insights i gain from spending an entire day thinking about how i used my time in
- i had put more time and energy into my budgeting processes.
- i had put more time into nailing down my shadow calendar.
- i hadn’t launched so many projects! i think i am too good at that.
- i had spent more time reflecting on the tools and systems i use.
- i spent more time reviewing the goals i set in my august 2018 retreat and setting new goals for 2019.
therefore, next year…
- i need to do more prep work for my budgets before retreat or i need to make more time and space for that chunk.
- i would like start reflecting with my woes in december so that when we talk in january, we can nail things down for my shadow calendar during my retreat week. i would also like set a specific day that i’ll call them so i can make sure we all connect and i can finish the whole thing.
- i will find way to narrow down the projects i will launch. maybe i’ll plan to do half of what’s in the potential set of ideas or something…
- i will spend more time review my tool stack, fixing it up, and getting rid of tools i no longer need.
- i will make setting goals a more explicit part of the process. and i mean identity based goals (like james clear talks about), not outcome-based goals. the outcomes follow from the identity shifts.
phew! i guess i did end up writing ~4/5 posts about my retreat (just like last year, lol). this time i just kept adding to the same post instead of starting a new one each day.
anywho, given that this is the fourth, it means the next one i write will be the one that is parallel to my “be a conduit” (and other phrases/mantras for 2018) post. coming right up…
—[end march 21 writing]—
words / writing / post-processing
(401+128+151+404)w / (11+10+12+16)min / (10+4+8+8)min