In preparation for my annual review at my place of employment, I am working on filling out the requested Self Assessment Form. As is typical of this type of forced self-analysis, the first step is to answer this question: “what do you consider to be your biggest accomplishments over the past year?”
After spending some time on this, I got to thinking about how different my answers would be if the question was not related to my work, but rather my personal life. We Real Women are busy people, always “doing”, always “working” on accomplishing something. We often talk about setting goals for ourselves, we write daily to do lists, and we craft our own bucket lists of someday things we want to do, finish, or experience. But do we ever, not just annually but really at any point, stop to consider what we have already done? Pause to reflect and allow ourselves even a small self-congratulatory pat on the back?
At work, when we review our past six months or year, we are hoping for praise from our bosses, or constructive suggestions. We hope this review yields kudos, or advancement, an increase in pay for a job well done, and most of all, continued employment. In our personal lives, however, most of these rewards don’t happen. Certainly we won’t be paid for our efforts, or be given a shiny new title like Queen of Everything. Because of this, we don’t really keep track of all that we accomplish – we just keep plugging along, marching toward the next endeavor. Isn’t it about time we give our personal selves a review, then hand out appropriate praise?
So go ahead, start thinking about what you’ve done over the past year – not work related, personally….What have you accomplished? Can’t think of anything? Ok, how about a few of these achievements:
* Health – Did you take steps to improve your health? Lose a little weight? Get more active? Start making healthier choices when eating? No? Then how about just getting through an illness, or dealing with a disability? Outstanding effort.
* Relationships – Still married? Still happily married? Or did you make a change away from a bad situation? Or start something exciting and new with someone? Did you make a new friend, or reconnect with an old one? Good for you.
* Home – Did you make improvements to your home? Move into a new apartment, condo or house? Refinance your mortgage? Did you keep your home relatively clean? Congratulations.
* Children – Do you have children? Did you do your best to feed, clothe, care fore, and teach them? Did you help someone else’s children? Impressive.
* Care giving – Is there someone else in your life you are helping take care of? Elderly parent? Disabled relative? Did you do any volunteer work, give to a charity, lend a hand and a smile to someone in need? Bravo.
* Exploration – Did you travel outside your immediate home and work area? Did you see or experience at least one new place or thing? Nice job.
* Learning – Did you try something new? Take up a new hobby or craft? Learn to cook, start a blog, write a book? Fantastic.
And how about one more: Did you every day play the game of beat the clock in your super-woman kind of way, juggling career, home, family, pets and any other part of your daily life? A+.
When I started to think about my own personal accomplishments over this past year, I started to feel pretty good about myself, proud even. My mood elevated, and I had a bit more pep in my step. And don’t tell my boss this, but my personal achievements mean much more to me than my professional endeavors.
So grab a cold drink, sit for a few moments in your favorite spot, and give yourself a personal review. You’ve worked hard for it, you deserve it. And let me be the first to say: Yay You.