You survived another year as a working artist. Congratulations!
Now it’s time to step back and look at all you have accomplished. This is a ritual to take your mind off of the long task list in front of you and to remind you that you really have done a great deal.
While it’s important to celebrate the wins in your life, it’s also important to evaluate how you can get more of them. Stick around for the twist at the end of the article.
You can separate this exercise into personal and business, or you can combine them into a single report, as I tend to do.
Make time for your review.
Set aside time in your schedule. It’s too easy to neglect this exercise if you try to squeeze it in whenever you feel like it.
I have found that I can’t do this all at once, but I like 90-120 minutes to get started.
Gather your data.
Find the information you need for assessing your accomplishments. This might include calendars and financial reports.
Record the highlights of the year.
What went well?
Where did you make money? (See that it’s an actual profit and not just a sale.)
What opportunities came your way?
What did you learn?
How did your influence expand?
What did you read or watch that inspired or motivated you?
What did you win or receive?
What did you do that was new and helped your business bottom line?
Where did you travel?
What art did you discover?
What valuable contacts did you make?
And now for the twist . . .
There’s a lot to learn from looking at what didn’t work and thinking about how you might approach it differently next year.
What didn’t go as you had planned?
Where did you lose money?
Where did you miss out on an opportunity and why?
Where would you like to see better results?
What can you change/add/remove in your life or business in order to improve your results?
I’d love to hear how you approach your annual review. Share your insights in a comment.