10 retrospective exercises for the end of the year

A series of questions and exercises aiming to bring more clarity and structure to the images and emotions related to this year

More than a week ago, I organized a workshop titled “Your Retrospective for 2020”. The recording is available for free in Romanian.

In the context of this article, it adds a lot of detail to the big picture. If you are interested in the English language closed captions, please let me know.

In various groups and communities that I belong to, I noticed that towards the end of the year, we naturally tend to slow down and look back at what we have achieved, what we went through during this year. This observation gave me the idea to organize this workshop and look closer at the topic of retrospective.

I recommend that you write down the answers to your questions to process them more easily.

1. How was your year?

  • What would you tell someone you haven't met in a long time about your year?
  • What grade would you give it and why?

2. Roles

  • What are the roles you have fulfilled this year, personally and professionally?
  • What were the most impacted roles?
  • How did you manage to reconcile these roles? Which were the most difficult points?
  • What were your most important resources?

3. Contexts

  • What were the contexts that were most important to you this year?
  • How were these contexts influenced by external factors, and how did you adapt?

4. Pivotal moments

  • What were the most important moments of the year?
  • How did they feel?
  • Were there moments changed the way you look at life?

5. Learnings

  • What did this year teach you?
  • What did you learn about yourself?
  • What surprised you?
  • What was confirmed about the way you act or react?
  • What has become clearer? What has crystallized from the experiences you have gone through?
  • What would you like to do differently?

6. Accomplishments

  • What are your biggest achievements of the year?
  • How did you manage to reach them? What resources did you access?

7. Celebration

  • How do you celebrate your achievements and times of joy?
  • Do you take a few moments for this, or do you move immediately to the next point on the list?
  • What would be different if you did?

8. Gratitude

  • To whom could you be grateful?
  • How would you tell? Write a short message, even if you don't send it.

9. Connection

We are social beings, and we need connection.

  • How has this year's isolation influenced your process and your mood?
  • What could you actively and consciously do to compensate for the isolation, if you need to?

10. Letter to yourself

  • What message would you like to send to your future self, for example, at the end of 2021?
  • What would be noteworthy so that you do not forget today's learning and awareness?
  • How do you relate to your future self?

Bonus. For those who are there for others

Especially for those who give, we are there for others, as coaches, mentors, psychotherapists, parents, managers, etc. Let us not forget to give ourselves the permission and the time to do what we recommend to others, which we know will help them.

What else would you add? What do you usually use as a retrospective process? What has been useful to you so far?

I wish you a peaceful new year full of everything you desire.

Cristian Boldișteanu
Cristian Boldișteanu
Coach, Consultant and Trainer