Tools

Use a “Change Audit” to Reflect on Progress and Set Intentions

Six questions that will help you determine how to make change in the year ahead

This end of the year is often a time of reflection: an opportunity to assess all the changes you’ve made, and to start thinking about what you hope to change next year. In that spirit, we’ve put together a Change Audit. Before heading out for the holidays, we encourage you to set aside some time to think through the following questions:

  1.  What changes did you make? Make a list of all the changes you’ve instigated this year—that is, the ones you had some control over. Whether they’re big or small, personal or professional, practical or emotional…add them to the list. (Whew—no wonder you’re tired.) Are there any patterns in the types of changes you’ve made?
  2. How did you make those changes? How did they unfold? Think about the changes that went even better than you hoped for, and those that, well, didn’t. (You might find it helpful to review our change journey to examine the relationship between your behavior and the emotional journey of change.) What was behind these outcomes? Then, take a moment to evaluate your mindset about certain types of changes: which changes did you approach in a fixed, rather than growth, mindset? Be honest.
  3. How did you engage others in your changes this year? Who were your champions? Your co-pilots? What did you learn from the skeptics around you? Looking ahead, where is your network strong, and where are the gaps?
  4. What significant change did you think about making that you didn’t do? What perspective do you hold now? Is there anything that would be different if you found yourself in the same situation today?
  5. What change do you want to make next year? Why? Why now? What does the ideal future state look like? Think about how you might explain or share it so that others understand and build on it.
  6. What might be your first steps in planning change? Finally, think through what conditions (e.g., moral support, resources, skills, agency, psychological safety) you need to make those first steps. For extra credit, review the steps needed to change a habit.
Published December 19, 2021

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