The Annual Life Review & Planning Weekend

A few years ago, one of my mentors introduced me to the idea of an annual life review and planning weekend.  It was something he did every year, both on his own and with his wife, because they wanted to be more intentional in how they lived their lives and raised their children.

Their goal is to assess their current life situation at least once a year, and determine what they wanted to focus on and achieve — in the next season, year, and 3-5 years — within each of the six major areas of life:

  1. Family/Home
  2. Financial/Career
  3. Community
  4. Health
  5. Personal Development
  6. Spiritual

As a part of this process, they asked themselves several questions:

  • What are our values (what things should be important to me) in this life area?
  • How important are they currently?
  • What is going well?
  • What needs attention?
  • What are our strengths in each area?
  • What are our opportunities for growth (weaknesses)
  • What limits should we place on this area, if any?
  • What are our goals for this area in this next season of life?
  • What are our goals for this area over the next 1-5 years?

My mentor led me through this process, along with a small group of other guys, a few years ago, and I could immediately see some benefits from the process:

  • Helps you identify blind spots
  • Fosters greater work-life balance because it impacts every area of life
  • Allows you to benchmark and track your growth and success
  • Reduces stress by helping you live on-purpose and not in crisis mode
  • Improves family communication

If you’ve never done an annual review before, anytime is a good time to do it!  That being said, it seems like the month of January is a natural time for an annual life review.  It seems like that’s the time when most people take stock of certain aspects of their lives and think about making positive life change.

My wife and I just realized this is something we need to schedule before the month — and the year — gets away from us.

What about you?  Is this something you’ve done?  If so, how has it helped you?  Or is it something that you think would help you?  Please share your thoughts below.

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