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Sensitive Strivers tend to set big goals for themselves. You may have had many ambitions at the beginning of this quarter or year.
As a sensitive high-achiever, you always want to keep learning and growing, because you expect a lot from yourself. You want to make the most of your time and you don’t want to let yourself down – or let setbacks or doubt get in your way.
That’s why today I wanted to share how to conduct your own personal quarterly review. This process will help you evaluate:
- The progress you’re making toward your goals
- What’s holding you back and how you can overcome it
- How you can make a plan of action for next quarter to make your goals a reality
This process is helpful whether you have a formal performance review coming up at work or if you simply want to reflect on your progress and achievements on your own time. The steps I’ll take you through today are very flexible, so they can be applied to both professional and personal goals and even expanded out to apply to a mid-year review process, which I discuss in this video.
Quarterly Performance Review Steps
Step 1. Take stock
Write down why each goal is important to you. Don’t be surprised if you discover some of your goals aren’t important anymore. That’s a good thing! It means you’re learning to prioritize and value your time. It’s also possible that your season of life or circumstances have shifted and you need to revisit your goal. Letting go of goals is something I discuss in my book TRUST YOURSELF. It’s important for Sensitive Strivers who tend to take on too much and be people-pleasers. By eliminating or even postponing certain items, you make space for the ones that will truly impact your life in a positive way.
So consider the new quarter a fresh slate. If you were starting over now, which goals would you choose to focus on? It’s also possible you have achieved a goal and can mark it as done, or that you need to adjust the scope or timeline in order to tackle it in the upcoming quarter.
Step 2. Reflect
Now that you have culled down your list of goals, it’s time to reflect and consider what progress you’ve already made. Amid the busyness of life, it can be hard to slow down and appreciate how far you’ve come. Sensitive Strivers also tend to be harsh self-critics. This is your chance to start changing that. You may not be where you want to be or where you’d thought you would be by this point in the year, and that’s okay. It’s still important to acknowledge and celebrate your wins because it gives you strength and courage to tackle new challenges – so don’t skip this step.
This idea of celebrating success is a cornerstone of what we practice in my program Resilient. When you learn how to stop beating yourself up and internalize your wins, your confidence transforms. So take some time to sum up your successes from the past three months. You are not the same person you were 90 days ago – you have achieved things, learned lessons, and grown as a result.
Step 3. Assess where you struggled
Now that you’ve reflected on what went well over the last quarter, consider where you struggled. What roadblocks – internal or external – did you face? Maybe you lacked time, energy, or maybe imposter syndrome or fear got in your way. Perhaps you lacked support from your loved ones or colleagues. Don’t let these insecurities and fears continue to linger in your head and haunt you. Getting them down on paper helps you put them in perspective and takes away some of their power.
Remember, we all face obstacles because accomplishing meaningful things at work and in your career is difficult. The fact that you have struggled is not a sign of your inadequacy but rather speaks to your grit and persistence. The point of this step isn’t to tear yourself down, but rather to look objectively at difficulties you faced and to learn from them.
You can also jot down struggles you anticipate facing in the next 90 days ahead. Maybe you have a big project coming up or a promotion that’s going to change the pressures you’re facing, for example.
Step 4. Brainstorm solutions
Next, you’re going to brainstorm solutions to the struggles you identified in Step 3. So if you’re facing a lack of time, for example, could you work on setting boundaries and saying no to remove yourself from certain meetings or commitments? If you need greater support, could you find a community of like-minded peers to consult with? Many times our struggles have fairly simple solutions. Identifying possible solutions makes it a lot harder to create excuses for why you can’t do something.
Step 5. Select your best next step
What will move you closer to that goal? What is something you could do today? That you could take action on now? Could you ask someone a question? Set a reminder on your phone? Set up a tracker? Make it small and keep it simple.
Once you have finished this exercise you should feel more confident in your accomplishments and have a pretty clear idea of your goals for the next quarter.