For the last six years, we’ve never failed to do it… Every three months, with no exception and regardless of what the circumstances might be we always managed to go through this 5-step process. It’s our strong belief that this is what progress is made of when it comes to achieving our goals.
Of good habits
We are always impressed with those who have the character and consistency to follow the path of their choosing. Just like this acquaintance of ours who has been practicing daily a breathing exercise for the last 10 years.
The one factor for success that’s always present is perseverance.
There must be a very good reason for that, right? That’s exactly what we thought and we decided to find out more about it.
Today we’ll talk about how we’ve been doing something for more than 6 years – a central for our system “ritual” – the 90-day review.
The day of the review
But let’s cut to chase.
You already know that we have two types of goals – the long-term (30-year vision) and short-term (90-day goals) which we advance to in small weekly steps.
Every 90 days, we get together with our Goal Buddy (in this case, the two of us) to set objectives for the next quarter.
And yet, that’s not the only thing we do.
We also examine in detail our objectives. Then there is a series of awareness and reasoning exercises. These are about what we have achieved, what we have learned, where we want to become, and how to get there.
That’s how we stay fully engaged and with 100% determination to overcome the drag of everyday life.
Why 90 days?
It’s quite simple – it works!
There is a lot of research that proves that setting one-year targets is not the best way. The 12-month period is too long while the three-month one is optimal. It is short enough to maintain motivation, but at the same time, it is long enough to find out if the current strategy is working.
So, wouldn’t you agree it makes sense to have a thorough analysis before deciding what’s next?
Of course, you can do it all by yourself. But will you? Every quarter? Year after year?
Well, there were times we thought we could. But in the end, we figured out that the Goal Buddy is what we need first and foremost.
When it’s the two of us it is so much easier to support each other and never miss a single meeting.
There is yet another big positive – the Goal Buddy is the one person who can give a different perspective as well as assist us in drawing a crystal clear picture of what’s going on.
What’s the point of this meeting anyway?
Of course, if it were something we do by cutting corners or rushing through it then it will be a complete waste of time.
No argument here – it must be a true event for us, i.e. meaningful, inspiring, and consequential.
We go over several routines to end up with resolve, focus, new ideas, and well-defined action-oriented objectives.
Step # 1: Reviewing the past progress
Let’s start with the following. You need to have written goals in order to be able to measure your progress.
But the rethinking of what happened does not include only our good moments. Our failures and missteps should be addressed too.
We will be making mistakes and there is no way around it. However, we must find lessons to be learned if we are to move forward.
Ivan’s personal coach in London is highly successful in personal as well as professional terms. He often talks about how the most famous entrepreneurs are those who regularly take the time to assess mistakes and adjust their actions accordingly.
How is it done
We simply write down everything – what we did and what we didn’t complete in the last 3 months.
We carefully scrutinize our actions aiming at those that turned out to be a good choice as well as those that were too hard or too easy.
Step # 2: An exercise in gratitude
There is this fact we often forget… you cannot be grateful and dissatisfied at the same time?
When you accept the idea to be thankful for all the good things that you did your mind will start filtering out everything negative that might come your way.
Just give it a try! Think for a minute that your kids are safe and healthy. Then you will realize that no bad traffic in your morning commute can ruin the day for you.
Actually, that’s the same state we are looking to enter and use its energy to set bigger and bolder objectives. It’s a trick of sorts we often employ.
How is it done
We write down everything positive for the last 3 months.
Then we evaluate our own progress, going back as far as we can remember. And after that, we make a list of it.
We have to admit it’s not easy. It takes time to get into the mindset of doing it but once you pick up speed you most likely will find out that there isn’t enough time for everything. We call this “filling up the gas tank” of your positivity.
That is the way we gain the confidence to take on even bigger goals.
Step # 3: Finding out the level of satisfaction with the various aspects of our life
There is one crucial addition to the above we want to point out – “these things that are most important to us”.
For different people, these could be different. But be careful. Make sure that they are truly the indispensable ingredient to a happier life. Health, family, career, etc. are just a few to mention.
Of course, you can’t have everything in the world. And you shouldn’t. Instead, you should be uncompromising when it comes to what is of most value to you.
How is it done
The “Wheel of Life” exercise will help us to identify those things that we are not happy with. They will become the focus for us in the next quarter.
Step # 4: The review of the long-term objectives
Once we know the direction of our efforts, we have to carefully examine the corresponding vision.
For example, if we realize that there is more to be done about our health, we revisit the latest written vision for it. We look at everything, especially to those that played the biggest role in the answer to the question “Why”.
However, we shouldn’t completely ignore how much we’ve already achieved.
How is it done
We answer honestly to the following questions:
- “Is this still the right direction? Do I still want the same thing?”
- “Is there anything else to add based on what I have learned so far from my new experience?”
- “What is my true intent, or why is it on my list?”
That’s how we ensure that we end up with a clear and specific roadmap.
Step # 5: Finally, we are ready now to set the action-oriented goals
It’s essential that these are structured and well organized. Often the wrong definition can ruin all of our efforts. The best approach is as follows:
First, the 90-day goal should be fully oriented on the vision. That is, to get us closer to our dream.
Second, it must be an action-oriented goal. Whatever we do must depend entirely on us so that we carry full responsibility for what happens.
And last but not least – the 90-day goal should serve as a landmark during the next meeting if we are on the right track.
Still, we need to estimate the action itself as well, not the outcome alone.
How is it done
The role of the Goal Buddy here is decisive. They will contribute to better-defined objectives via impartiality and objectivity.
After the discussion we write down the objectives for the next three months:
- The actions we need to undertake;
- The expected result;
- The answer to the question “Why?”
So, that’s all we need.
And then, let’s go on into the next quarter!
At this point, we will feel fully invigorated. The normal commitments of everyday life will cease to be a distraction and we will start seeing all kinds of opportunities along the way.
Success is not like a lottery win. It’s rather a way of life that makes us happy in the long run.
How often do you look back and do you learn from your failures? Perhaps, you may commit to make this a new habit of yours? Do you already have a Goal Buddy to go through this review together?
We wish you all the success in that. Have a great day!