Are you a game-planner, like me? Do you like to start annual planning by the time October rolls around? You’re not alone. This year, I have taken a different approach to my annual and quarterly planning by incorporating best practices from some thought leaders I admire.
I’ve modified a version of Hal Elrod’s The Miracle Morning protocol to start my mornings and use his Level 10 Life worksheet as part of my quarterly review process. I review my Level 10 life every day during my Miracle Morning time slot.
I’m using Jeff Sander’s The 5am Miracle book as a guideline for reaching my grandest goals. I really like how he breaks down his annual process into quarters vs. setting grandiose annual goals. If you get his book, you’ll be able to also download his spreadsheets and questionnaires (if you enjoy meticulously tracking your progress.)
I’ve been following David Allen’s Getting Things Done method for a few years. Though I’ve modified GTD to fit my lifestyle—I’m no business executive—it’s one of the best methods for me to ensure nothing slips through the cracks.
This brings me to my high-level vision for 2016. I’ve been following Chris Brogan’s work off-and-on for a few years, and I’ve always found his My 3 Words for the Year posts to be incredibly motivating. His method to annual planning is to approach your year (how you frame your goals, intentions and activities) through the lens of your three words. Before you start setting goals, choose your three words.
My three words for 2016 are Mastery: Turning Pro
Mastery - As I approach 30-years-of-age, it’s time for me to begin honing my craft. Pursuing mastery is how I will get there. I’ve always considered myself a writer, but I’ve been dabbling for too long. Because I’m a multipotentialite by nature, it’s all too easy for me to get sidetracked by the latest and greatest shiny object.
Turning - This year is a turning point for me. Not only am I moving into the next decade of my life, I am also birthing a new human being this year. I will be a smom to one teenage daughter and a mom to a toddler daughter and a newborn son. There are also several other “turning” points that I foresee in the year ahead.
Pro - This word goes along with mastery, though it is a bit different. Becoming a pro requires dedication, determination and persistence to move from the amateur stage into the pro ranks in several areas of my life. I am hell-bent on truning pro as a writer this year by finishing my current WIP and revising one of my already-written novels. It’s time to get serious about what matters most and follow through with the actions needed to get me to this level.
Those are my three. They are how I will make decisions and determine which next action steps to take.
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Your Turn: Have you ever tried using three words to plan your year? If so, how did that shape your annual planning process? I’d love to hear your stories and any tactics you’ve used to successfully plan your year and follow through on that plan!