The Monthly Review

By Leo Babauta

I talked about the Year-End Reflection as a way to look back on your year, realize your accomplishments, solidify your learning … but that can take a lot of work, because we forget a lot of what we’ve done.

Enter the Monthly Review.

I just started doing this, actually, after realizing that my Year-End Reflection took a lot more work than it needs to. If I do a quick journal entry reflecting on every month, once a month, then it makes everything easier. Things are fresh in my mind. It doesn’t take that long.

So what I’ve done is just set a reminder for the beginning of every month to do my Monthly Review. Then I spend about 10 minutes that day looking over my past month:

I look through my calendar and notes and to-do lists and stuff like that, and it doesn’t take long. I highly recommend it!

This review helps me feel like I’ve accomplished something in just a month, and it lets me take a big-picture look at my life, something I might not be doing often enough. I can correct my course, refocus myself, or simply feel good about what I’m doing. And I love how whatever I learned doesn’t feel as fleeting anymore, because these reviews help me lock it in a bit.

At the end of the year, I simply need to review these monthly reviews, and the Year-End Reflection should be a piece of cake.