How would you say 2019 has treated you? Did you get that promotion you wanted or the bonus you deserved? Did you achieve the work/life balance you set out for and are enjoying the rewards?

In January, we’re all gung-ho about what we want to achieve that year but as the months progress, the day-to-day stuff gets in the way. Then our desired goals can dwindle or get forgotten about altogether. So I’ve put together some tips on how to reflect on 2019, recharge in December and plan for 2020.

  1.  Ever felt like you’re running to the finish line and can’t remember where you started?

Then as December rolls around and as we’re reflecting back on the year gone by, we can get disheartened about not achieving our set goals. It’s very easy to go off track over 12 months. Looking a full year ahead can seem fine in January but the goals will be big and the time starts to tick. You need to have quarterly, monthly, weekly and daily activities to work towards these goals. Otherwise you’ll be staring up the side of the mountain without a clear plan on how to start climbing.

  1.  Eating, drinking and not feeling very merry

The Christmas break can be a funny one – most of us are shattered or burnt out, we’re desperate for a re-charge and a rest. But due to commitments and it being, well, Christmas we can do too much, drink too much, party too much and feel worse than what we did before. It isn’t good for both our physical and mental health.

  1.  Reflect, recharge and reset

As December creeps in and before the madness starts, it’s worth taking some time for you, to really look at the year gone by. It gives you a chance to assess how happy and content you are in your career at the moment. What changes have you implemented for the better, what do you still need to do? Are you just stuck and need some guidance?

  1.  Take time out to just think

Taking some time out to just be and think is so vitally important and to check-in with yourself honestly about how you really are. Work can be full-on and stressful and you maybe haven’t taken the time to really assess how many hours you’re doing. You could be doing more than you should be or if there are relationships that you’re struggling with and need work.

  1.  If you’re not happy where you work, you can change it, so do it!

My motto is: life’s too short, so let’s crack on. And I do live by this mantra. It’s never worth being miserable or unhappy at work and I see time and time again people that are. This can be due to a number of things including a lack of confidence to do anything about it and they’re just stuck in a rut. They nay not realise how unhappy they are and feel a sense of responsibility (this is particularly common when the salaries are high). The classic stiff upper lip that they’ll just get on with it, be grateful to have a job and not moan.

I’m thankful to say that nowadays people are demanding more from their careers in terms of wellbeing, happiness and satisfaction. It’s widely appreciated that a working relationship is just that – a relationship – and that needs to be balanced, nurtured and cared for.

So, I would encourage you to have a chat with yourself and really ask yourself how happy you are currently. And if there is something niggling away at you or something that doesn’t feel right, don’t ignore it. Listen to it and address it and it could be the key to your future happiness.

If you would like to work with me on setting goals for 2020 and reflecting kindly on 2019, I’d love to hear from you.


Emma Mills-Sheffield is a strategic business advisor and coach working with clients in London and Brighton. Having spent 15 years in industry she now helps businesses become more efficient and productive to get the best from their organisation. By reviewing business operations and investing in people, this encourages business growth with a more productive and happier workforce. In short, helping businesses get shi*t done.

In January 2020 she was named as one of 100 female entrepreneurs in the UK as part of the small business campaign f:Entrepreneur. The campaign including #ialso Top 100 is a collection of women who inspire their peers and communities through their businesses and wider activities.