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Reflecting on 2021 and leveraging it for 2022

Dec 30, 2021

Reflection improved outcomes by 23%. It's imperative that we reflect, so here are 14 questions to help you do so.


At no point during the year is the schedule as packed as December. First, you have Thanksgiving (I know, that’s November, but close enough), then you have holiday parties with work, and everything else leading up to Christmas.

But no, it’s not yet finished. We encore with New Years!

With each New Year, there is talk of resolutions and goals and starting a new chapter... the talk is endless. It seems that each year people come out of the woodwork to talk about how resolutions don’t work and they’re not even worth setting.

I’m not going to be one of those guys. Now, I’m not a resolutions guy. I’m a goals guy. The difference is this: a resolution is an unclear aspiration. A goal is a defined finish line with concrete action steps. I’ll dig more into this next week.

What I want to focus on this week is reflection.

Anytime something starts or ends, it’s a good practice to reflect on what happened and look toward the future.

Reflection allows us to pause and remove ourselves from the chaos of this world to truly learn lessons from where we’ve been and what we’re doing.

I’ve consistently read books since at least 2011. The first year, I only read 12 or so books. The next, just a few more. Then in 2013, I realized: I can’t call myself a reader if I hardly read. I was proud of 28 that year.

Over the last 5 years, I’ve averaged 83 books per year. Yes, that’s the average. It’s a lot for many, a little for some, but it’s a crazy transformation from where I was 10 years ago.

If I hadn’t reflected, I wouldn’t have seen the lesson of compounding in that progress or how compounding works in all areas of life. But, that’s a story for another newsletter.

Reflection is proven to boost outcomes. Those who reflected on their day increased outcomes by 23%. (source)

Reflection is necessary to building wealth because reflection will allow you to take lessons from the past and apply them to create a better future.

So for today, I’m posing 14 questions that will require reflection from you. These are questions I’ve asked myself before and am asking myself this year.

Seven of them will help you reflect on 2021 and the other 7 will help you look forward to 2022.

Next week I’ll break down my goal-setting frameworks, so for now we’ll set that stage.

For reflection on 2021:

  1. What’s one word would you use to describe your year?

  2. What makes 2021 memorable? Significant life events, transitions, etc. List at least 3.

  3. What are you proud of accomplishing?

  4. Which of last year's goals did you not achieve? Why did you not achieve them? Will you carry them on to 2022 and if not why?

  5. What life lessons did you learn? List at least 3.

  6. What new relationships did you build? What did you let fall away?

  7. What advice would you give your last-year self?

Looking forward to 2022:

  1. What are you going to continue doing?

  2. What do you want to change completely?

  3. How do you intend to be different at the end of next year?

  4. What will you do to step out of your comfort zone?

  5. Which existing relationships do you want to focus on?

  6. What places do you want to visit?

  7. What will you say “no” to?

I hope that the new year finds you well. I’d love to hear some of your answers, so reply to this email and tell me how you answered one of the 14.

Podcast: Lessons from 2021

I posted a few lessons I learned in 2021 on my podcast and tied them back to financial lessons. You can listen by clicking below.


Question of the week

After reflecting on the question above, I'd love to hear how you answered one of the 14. Reply and let's discuss!


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