Last year we shared this blog post to help you take stock of all that had occurred in what was a difficult year for many. We’re now midway through 2021 and, in many places, it is feeling like a reawakening and a return to some level of normalcy (even though we are not out of the woods yet!). So, once again, this is a great time to be Thoughtful – to stop and reflect, consider all that we have experienced, and focus on the future you envision for yourself.

Here are a few questions to think about:

  • What are you learning? – Building your knowledge and skills is always a critical part of any development plan, and that does not need to be put on hold because of changing circumstances. There are still tons of webinars available from all over the world, and many are free. I have a friend who lost her job at the start of the pandemic. She found several free or low-cost classes to help her learn additional tools to beef up her credentials and skills and she landed a new job that is more fulfilling. Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion continues to be a top priority for many organizations and an opportunity for us to understand our history and be more open to learning more about people who are different from us. What are you learning that will continue to help you move forward?
  • Where have you stepped up? – No doubt, work has been uncharted territory for more than a year now. Working from home, connecting with your team, leading change, supporting your colleagues, and now, returning to the office in some shape or form. What have been your moments of greatness and positive difference? Write them down and celebrate your strengths and accomplishments in the face of difficulty. Whether you successfully redirected and led your team or organization through upheaval, advocated for and established policies and practices to better support your colleagues, pushed for meaningful action to fight racism and get serious about Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion efforts, or jumped in to help no matter where the need was. Where the need was, you’ve stepped up in many ways at work and at home. Where do you want to keep stepping up?
  • What are you creating? – Many of us have turned to our creative outlets – poetry, music, song, art, writing, photography, cooking, and more. Whether it was picking up an instrument again, taking the easel out of the attic, sharing artistic work on social media, finding voice through writing, or generating ideas at work, creativity was an expression of feelings, a healing escape, and a chance to renew, remember, and focus on the beauty and hope around you. I am still inspired by nature during my morning run and afternoon walk – so many birds, rabbits, squirrels, chipmunks, and the beautiful swan that glides across the lake. That inspiration is helping me to focus on creativity. What is inspiring you?
  • Where will you focus now? – You may be feeling a sense of possibility and purpose now, a desire to get back to normal or to never go back to normal. Given where you are right now, what are your top three goals? They may be very different from those you set a year ago. They may be about work, about volunteering in your community, about being an agent for change, about caring for yourself, or about focusing on your loved ones. Your priorities and desires may be different now. Think about what else you want to learn, how you want to step up and grow, and what else you want to create. Where will you intentionally focus?

Taking stock of what you have been able to accomplish, how you have changed and grown, and what you desire to achieve now and in the future can bring you purpose and clarity. Doing your own personal mid-year review will help you reflect on the past and plan for the future. And help you focus on and capture the ways in which you have seized this moment for the better and the ways you want to continue to take action, be Thoughtful, and show up.

What are the highlights of your personal mid-year review?
Please leave a comment.

If you enjoyed this post, you can read more like it in our book, The Power of Thoughtful Leadership: 101 Minutes To Being the Leader You Want To Be, available on Amazon.

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