As the new year approaches, most of us can’t help reviewing the old year. As we do, we ask ourselves whether we accomplished all of the goals we set at the beginning of the year. As I do my own review, I realize that I didn’t accomplish all my goals.

Now, it may sound crazy to hear me say that I didn’t accomplish everything I wanted to since, in the eyes of the outside world, I am considered very successful. Only a week ago, for example, I was named Citizen of the World 2019 by the Hospitality Committee of the United Nations—an award that has brought me so much delight and a sense of accomplishment! Then, back in September, I was the recipient of the International Award by the Federation of Executive and CEO Women of Spain ( FEDEPE). As this was the first award I ever received in my country of birth, Spain, it was very special indeed.

Additionally, I had speaking engagements in about eight different countries this year, and I expanded my networks and crafted different workshops and programs. I also developed one-on-one mentoring programs and participated in mentoring programs with the Cherie Blair Foundation, The City Hall of New York City, and the Global Thinkers Forum. I also managed to spend more quality time with my family, spending almost three months traveling with them, and I had more time for friends and entertainment, overall.

Despite all that I accomplished, however, it wasn’t enough. You know all those new year’s resolutions we all make? I had more than 15 goals for the year, but I only accomplished about 10 of them. How funny is it that no matter how much we do accomplish, we still have a tendency to focus on the things that we didn’t get done? In any case, we must be careful about what we focus on, because our level of frustration and stress increases as a consequence of this focus.

One of my goals was to go to the gym five times per week and do yoga three times per week. I wanted to meditate for an hour each day, learn to speak German, improve my French writing skills, and open up my market in Latin America!!! Yeah, yeah! I also wanted to shed some pounds, write more, and read more. And then what?

I abandoned my old pattern of perfectionism in 2018, but I haven’t abandoned being hard on myself and being super demanding. This year, however, I am determined to leave this pattern of behavior behind for good, because this behavior doesn’t help me to move forward. I realize that I have to focus on making progress, instead. The truth is that I did make a lot of progress, and I like the person that I am today better than the person I was at the beginning of the year.

Sometimes our frustration is the result of a misperception which may not even be real, so here is my advice:

1) Ask yourself if you are making progress. Do not focus only on the results.

2) Analyze whether you are comparing yourself with others. The only person you need to compare yourself with is with the person you were yesterday.

3) Connect with your true self. Do you really want that the thing(s) you listed in your goals?

4) Review your goals every three months. We keep evolving; therefore, our goals evolve, too. Plan!

5) Celebrate every win, whether big or small.

6) Release everything that is causing you anxiety, which you don’t need!

7) Re-focus! It’s an ongoing process.

8) Live with the attitude “Yes, I can.”

9) Do not take anything too seriously or too personally.

10) Accept your emotions even if they are negative. Dive into them, feel them, and move on.

11) Look for an outsider’s objective perspective. Maybe you are not as far behind as you think, after all!

In conclusion, do not entertain this emotion (frustration) for too long, because it can block you from moving forward. At this time of the year, shift your energy towards your accomplishments and all the amazing experiences and moments that you lived. Adopt the attitude of the person you are trying to become because, in the end, our goals and plans will help us to become the best version of ourselves.

Have a beautiful end of the year. Enjoy each minute of it, no matter whether your year was a great one or not. The good news, after all, is that a new year is coming, and you can make it the best one of your life yet!

Happy New Year 2020!!!


Article originally published in Bisila Bokoko’s LinkedIn profile.