What are the things that you are thankful for the year 2016? In this blog post, we will reflect on the past year and list the things we are grateful and more. I also have a challenge for you at the end. Let’s celebrate with gratitude!
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In this training, I’m going to walk you through a time to celebrate 2016 together. We’re going to go through my Generous Gratitude worksheet and celebrate all that is happened in 2016.
This is going to be a take action coaching session. This is also something that I have inside AuthorAudienceAcademy.com, inside PlanIt Day.
It’s a training I have to help you set up your year, especially your next 90 days, for success. You’ll go through the training and choose a 90-day goal. And one of the things we do in PlanIt Day is we celebrate. We learn to have gratitude.
So I wanted to do this personally for my own year for 2016. I thought, “What a fun way to do this together.”
Let’s go through this worksheet together, and let’s celebrate what we did in 2016. I don’t know about you, but for me sometimes it’s really easy to just get busy. It’s easy to not celebrate what I’ve accomplished, and just simply go on to the next thing. Is anyone else guilty of that?
I’m going to do this right alongside you because I want to celebrate. I want to take some time to review 2016 and I thought it would be fun to do it together.
It’s time to celebrate with gratitude. Let’s celebrate your accomplishments this past year.
So you would want to set a timer. You also need to take out a paper and pencil or whatever your recording tool is. For me, I have colored markers.
Then put the numbers 2016 at the top of the page. That’s how we start.
The first thing I want you to make a list of is your milestones.
What are some milestones that you hit this year? What are some things that you did this year that were significant for you?
Please write that on your recording tool. Set the time for 2 minutes and start taking notes.
We don’t need to take long. Just take 2 minutes and write out some things that you hit last year. List down milestones you hit, and then we will check back in just a couple minutes.
Personally, I have my big 2016 planner on the wall. So every time, I can just glance up and see some of the things that could be milestones.
That’s one of the things I love about wall calendars. You can see things at a glance.
There were a lot that has happened last year. And you know what? It’s good to celebrate. It’s good to remember and to put those things down on paper.
One of the things I do is set 90-day goals. So on my big wall calendar, I write Breakthrough Goal. And then I write what my breakthrough goal was for that 90 days.
So in a year, I have four things that I can look back to and say, “Yeah, those were some of my big goals, and also some of my big milestones that I hit during 2016.” What a blessing!
Thankfulness and gratitude are throughout the Bible. No matter if you are a believer or not, gratitude is powerful. So going back and remembering and saying, “Wow, look at that! That was amazing, so awesome,” is powerful.
There’s just so much to be thankful for. That’s why it’s so important to just take the time, take a moment, and to celebrate with gratitude.
Last year we published over 50 books for our publishing company. That was a milestone. We hired two part-time virtual assistants. That’s another huge milestone. We paid off all our loans. We finally paid off our tax loan from several years ago when we first got into the business and didn’t know what we were doing. That was a milestone!
So there’s so much to celebrate.
Successes are those things that you had planned and pushed through. It could be little things or even technical things you finally overcame.
Then we’re going to go over to goals met. Those three somehow work together. So let’s go ahead and write down some successes and some goals met.
Since we already wrote down a lot of milestones some of these might overlap a little bit. If you can think of other things go ahead and write down some successes.
You could also include mindset issues. For me, it was going from scarcity to faith. I think that would be a success for me this year because that really held me back.
For goals met, that could be some of your 90-day goals. You can include some of the breakthrough goals that you set, even just smaller goals that you met.
Another one of the successes personally was my first in-person writing retreat. That was a huge obstacle. It just seemed so big and harder than anything I’ve done.
I don’t know why. I speak all the time at conferences, but filling the seats and getting everything organized was a huge success for me. How about for you?
Another big goal that I was able to meet this year was publishing my book Broken Crayons Still Color. I also published the podcast that goes along with that topic. That was huge.
It took four and a half months to about five months to complete it. That was a huge chunk of my year. It was a huge investment of my time, and I really pray that the book then continues to encourage, impact, and bless people. I also pray that we continue to have book royalties and income from it for years to come.
Things that Worked Well
So now we’re moving into a couple other categories. I want you to think back to last year.
What worked really well for you? Write down those things.
It could be a system that you set in place or someone that you hired for a book cover. It could also be a certain promotion that you did. It could be a number of things.
One thing that worked really well for me was the 9-day accountability group with my Author Audience Academy Members. It just worked really well. A lot of people finished and published their books, and got results.
A couple other things that worked was my Beta Group for my Broken Crayons Still Color book. It helped me to have accountability to finish my book. So now I got my book finished, people were impacted and lives were changed.
Something else that worked for me was hiring my VAs and outsourcing more. I tend to be a person who wants to be in control. I am workaholic. So for me to outsource and to have people helping me, it was a big thing for me. But it worked. It’s really helping me to do more, and yet not have to do it myself.
Something else that has continued to work for me is webinars. That’s the number one way that I bring people into Author Audience Academy.
Then, the last question here is “What were some of your bestselling books or products?”
I just want you to take a minute. If you need to, you can look into your statistics and see what your bestselling books were. Just write those down so that you get an idea of what sold and what worked well.
Sometimes we think we know what works well. But one thing you may need to do is to go into your statistics later and look it up. See what your bestselling book was last year.
One of the books that have really sold well for us was my book that was translated into Spanish. It’s called Spanish book 21 Prayers of Gratitude. It’s been one of our bestsellers on Kindle for many months. So that’s been really interesting.
For my print book, one of my best selling continues to be Self-Publishing Books 101. Obviously, I’ve had some bursts of sales near the end of the year with my book launches, and that is always great. So I think my Broken Crayons Still Color book will probably take that number 1 spot on an ongoing basis. But we will see.
Here is a little bonus tip for this exercise. I encourage you to have a success treasure chest file. Mine is a folder in Dropbox. I literally call it Success Treasure Chest.
One of my business coaches recommended I do this, and I’ve been doing this for a while now.
So anytime that you need a testimonial, social proof, or just a good pick-me-up on a day, it’s good to go back and read those.
Sometimes, we forget how we’ve impacted people’s lives. We don’t remember what feedback has come into us.
We have the tendency to get caught up in the day to day grind and the negativity. I don’t have a reference for it, but I remember someone saying that “Your brain holds on and remembers the negative.”
So it’s easier to remember the haters and those people who sent you the negative feedback or reviews.
That’s why it’s so important to just remember the positive ones. I usually capture them with a screenshot.
You can build this file and then remember back. That’s something that I’d really encourage you to start if you haven’t started yet. If you do, I encourage you to take a few minutes and go through a few of those from this year to see what a difference you’ve made.
Finally, I encourage you now to show your appreciation. I really challenge you to do this. I want you to write at least one “thank you” card to someone who helped you the past year.
It could be a family member, your spouse, or a business or author coach. It could also be someone who helped you proofread or your beta reader. It could be anyone who helped you in some way in your journey.
Just go ahead and write down the name of the person. Then send a “thank you” card to that person. If you do that make sure that you follow up with it before the end of the year. Do it today or this week, before you forget.
So, once you’ve celebrated your own success and appreciated everything that God has given you, it’s time to thank your supporters.
Maybe your mom watched your kids 3 times a week so you could make it to the gym, or write. Or maybe your spouse believed in your business when you were just starting out. It could also be that a mentor provided you with advice that helped you succeed.
I always recommend thanking the people in your community that stood by you during the journey. It never ever hurts. It sows gratitude and thankfulness into your life.
Don’t stop there! You can always ask how you can return the blessing. Look for ways that you can support the dreams of the community that supported your dream.
This has just been a short practice of going back through into 2016 and just saying, “Yeah! Thank you, Lord.”
This is a time to celebrate. This is a time to have gratitude, and a time to write it down. It’s just powerful when you write these things down. Then you can go back next year and look at them.
The Prayer of Thanksgiving
I want to close this with a prayer. Praise is so powerful! God has been showing me lately in my life how powerful praise is. Praising Him and thanking Him shows how powerful gratitude is.
I learned that lesson deeply in 2012 when I first wrote my gratitude series. But I’m learning it in even a deeper way. It is powerful. So speak it out and thank the Lord.
You can even pray scriptures that are filled with thanksgiving; the Psalms are full of them. It’s just so powerful. So I’m going to pray and you can pray along with me.
“God, I thank You so much for 2016. I thank You for this year. I thank You for all that you did in and through each one of us. I thank You for all of the milestones and the successes for the goals met. Lord, for what worked and for any sales that we got for any books and any products sold, thank You. Thank You for that. We praise You for blessing us and the works of our hand. And we thank You for all that You have done and how You have used us.
We pray that those books and products, those seeds planted and social media posts would continue to bring forth fruit. We pray that it would continue to bring forth a harvest and be an impact in our lives and other’s lives.
We just thank You that Your word does not return void. We thank You that we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. So Lord I pray, if anyone is weary right now, if anyone is tired, and wants to give up on their journey, I pray that You would show them the next steps. I pray that You would give them clarity for 2017. Speak to them. Help them to find rest for their souls in You.
It’s not through striving, doing, and through any of our own efforts. God, it’s through You and Your presence in our lives.
I pray that You would help them find that peace and rest in You. And to know that we are a success in Your eyes if we are obedient to what You’ve called us to do.
Regardless of the book sales or the results or the number of people on our email list, You are proud of us. No matter how many products we sell, we are a success if we’ve been obedient to You. So Lord, help us to see success as You see success.
Lord help us to be thankful and see the things that You’ve given to us. We pray that we will walk into 2017 with even more clarity than we’ve ever had before. With even more peace, more of Your presence, and more of a stronger calling on our lives.
It is our prayer that whatever You’ve called us to do through our writing will have an impact not only for us but for others. May You just be glorified in our lives, and we pray this in Jesus’ name. Amen.”
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