Reflection Exercises Can Help With Setting New Career And Life Goals
By Tyng Kam, Stride Career Prep Success Coach
It is the time of the year where we often reflect on what we have done within the last annual period. We take stock of our achievements, and work to identify areas for improvement in the new year.
2021 continues to be challenging for many of us, as we battle Covid-19 for a second year. Many of us are working hard to develop new skills, adopt new habits, and adapt to new environments. While we take time to count our blessings around the holiday season, it is also important to spend some time reflecting on what we have done this past year. This can help us with both personal growth and in our career prep.
Below is a retrospection exercise (adapted from positivepsychology.com) to guide you through the reflection process. Retrospection is the action of looking back on, or reviewing, past events or situations, especially those in your own life.
On a scale of 1 to 10, rate how you feel about each area listed in the table below (1 being VERY NOT SATISFIED, and 10 being VERY SATISFIED). You can list N/A for any areas that are not relevant to you.
Area 1: You (overall)
Area 2: Your physical health
Area 3: Your emotional health
Area 4: Your school and/or academic standing
Area 5: Post-high school and graduation planning
Area 6: Your professional development and career prep
Area 7: Your relationships (friends, family, and people you see on a regular basis)
Area 8: Hobbies & Fun
Area 9: Competencies and skills
Area 10: Your spirituality
Review all the areas where you are somewhat satisfied (where you use a rating between 4 and 7). It can be hard to effectively reflect when you don’t have a clear idea of whether you are satisfied with a specific area or not.
Go through these “somewhat satisfied” areas, and rate your satisfaction again. But, this time, use only ratings between 1 and 3 or between 8 and 10. Limiting your options to either “very satisfied” or “not very satisfied” will help you make a more decisive judgment about your satisfaction in each area.
Highlight every section rated with a 1, 2, or 3 in red, and highlight every section rated with an 8, 9, or 10 with green. Finally, for all ten areas of life, ask yourself, “What makes you rate your satisfaction at this level?”
Be sure to celebrate successes, big or small, and reward yourself for your achievements. Also, assess areas you are not satisfied with by asking yourself why and how you would do it differently in the new year. That way you can strive to make these areas stronger, which will better assist you with continued personal growth and career prep and development.
Identify three key life areas that are most important to you, to prioritize them in your new year plan.
Any desires you have are only a wish, until you have a plan. As a final step to this exercise, you will want to set a goal in 2022 for each of the top three areas using the S.M.A.R.T. principle.
According to the S.M.A.R.T. prinicipal, your goals should fulfill the following guidelines:
· Goals should be Specific (S), like "I want to get my first part-time job by June 2022."
· Goals should be Measurable (M), such as "I would measure my goal of completing three job interviews by making sure to apply to at least ten jobs in the next three months."
· Goals and plans should also be Attainable (A), like "I will target entry-level part-time positions, that are open to hiring high school students."
· Goals should be Relevant (R) to your journey, such as "I will develop workplace skills, earn some money, and get a head start on my future career."
· And, last but not least, goals should be Time-bound (T), such as "I will achieve my goal by June 2022."
And, to find out more about “How To Set S.M.A.R.T. Goals,” be sure to click HERE.
If you are uncertain about future career choices, and feel like you need help in Finding Your Path, then career success coaching may be for you!
And, be sure to check out this article… A Coach’s Advice On Real-World Personal Branding, too!
To learn more about Stride Career Prep Success Coaching for teens, and what it offers, be sure to visit this site: https://www.stridelearning.com/career-prep/career-exploration/student-success-coaching.html