Closing the loop

Closing the loop

How did 2019 start for you and your business? Did it start at a Sprint, a leisurely jog or a walk?

In November 2018, I was already setting 6 business and personal goals for myself with the full intention of starting the year running my personal best.  Until my mentor in Norway stopped me dead in my tracks.

“Yoke you will only learn by looking backwards, by reflecting, by seeing what has worked and what hasn’t.   If you are constantly running mindlessly ahead, you are not learning from the past and may be repeating the same business mistakes over and over again.” He reminded me of Steve Jobs Commencement Address at Stanford where he coined the phrase: “You will only be able to connect the dots by looking backwards .”

“Honest self-reflection opens your mind to reprogramming, change, success and freedom” -Trudy Vesotsky

Let’s start reprogramming ourselves. Let’s sit down, shut our laptops, turn of our cellphones, take out our notebooks and let’s start writing.

  1. What were some of the highlights of 2018?
  2. What were some of the things that didn’t work so well?
  3. Are there things you would want to repeat again this year?
  4. Are there things that you would want to do differently?

At the beginning of 2018 my husband and I made use of a free ap called: Wunderlist and opened a list called: Goals of 2018. My list included articles that I wanted to get published, speaking Gigs that I wanted to get, the amount of hikes we wanted to do, special meals with friends, vacation plans with family, and I’m proud to say that I have ticked off many of those goals.  But some of them never happened.

Setting Big hairy audacious goals

So, should we only set small goals that we can definitely achieve? Nelson Mandela disagrees: There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.

Stretch goals are incredibly important, but what usually happens is we never break the big goals into smaller chunk sizes, with specific actions and timelines attached to them.  Only once you can plan to succeed, will it happen.

What were your outcomes for the year? How far did you get?

Were those goals realistic or should they be tweaked for 2019?

Let us review 5 areas in your life:

Your personal brand, relationships, spiritual life, finances and health.

Your Personal Brand

We get branded all the time through friends, clients and family members.  The question is are you happy with what they are saying about you when you’ve left the room, and can you change that?

Definitely! People will base their opinions on your emails, your fascial expressions, your body language, the words you use, the actions you take or choose not to take.  What has your brand been like this past year?

To do:

  • Review your Social media, your LinkedIn -what were you writing about, what were you vocal about and what weren’t you? What image did you put out to the world about you and your business?
  • Send a message to 5 friends and clients-please send me one word that describes me. Are you happy with what they are saying, or do you need to take deliberate action to change this?

Your relationships

How has your relationships been this past year with your partner, your close friends and your family? Have you seen them enough and have you had special times with them?

What gets scheduled gets done.

We tend to do this in our business or our work environments, but how often do you schedule an important date night with your partner, a phone call with your mother or a catch up with your close friend? Do you plan on a monthly basis who you want to see and invite people to events?

Don’t send flowers to someone when they are already dead, send it to them while they are alive!  Do a Love Languages test for your close relationships to see how you can better show an appreciation for them, in the way that they will receive it.

Your Spiritual life

Do you feel that you’ve grown enough in your Spiritual life? Are there things that you would like to do differently in the coming year?  Are there courses that you can go on, books you can read and accountability partners that you can meet with?  Do you set time aside for your Spiritual life, or is it always taking a back-seat, for when you have time?


How has your relationship been with finances?  How is it helping you building a life for you and your family?   What are your beliefs around finances? Do you draw up a budget for your business and for your personal life, and how well did you stick to it in 2018?

In Douglas Kruger’s book: “Is your Thinking keeping you poor” he uses an analogy, of filling your wheelbarrow with nuggets of Gold. He explains that Entrepreneurs need to move away from charging per hour. This is when you are filling your wheelbarrow with Coal. You are commoditizing yourself and limiting your income.  If you charge based on value, or outcomes delivered-the conversation starts becoming something completely different.

Your health

How do you deal with stress as a Business owner, mom or executive? What is your favorite way of destressing and exercising and what were your results in 2018?

I’ve found that my 5:45 am Adventure Bootcamp is one of the best ways to drive me to exercise under group pressure, and to interact with fun ladies in Sandton-every morning.

When woman exercise, we often just do it to lose or maintain weight, but could you also focus on gaining fitness or strength and balance as a goal?

My hubby and I went on a 13km hike at Rustig in Magaliesburg in November.  We hiked from 8:30 am till 3:30pm, rationing our water supply, having a supply of an apple, nartjie and bananas plus two boerewors rolls for energy.  Besides the beautiful views and soaking up the sun and nature I loved noticing how flexible I had become because of bootcamp.  My legs were so much stronger, and my balance had improved a lot! Not once did I stress that I might fall down the mountain or ask for a hand. I was impressed with myself!

What are you proud of in terms of your fitness, health and happiness levels in 2018?

I hope that you’ve found great value in reflecting over your last year. And given yourself a few high-fives on things that you’ve done right.  May these words of Steve Jobs inspire you going into 2019:

Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure — these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important.

- AD -


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