Creating a Life Plan is a powerful experience, especially when you take a day to get away and dive fully into the process. But if you walk away from your Life Plan day and never pick up your plan again, you’re setting yourself up for disappointment and failure.
Research has shown that we tend to forget new information exponentially within a few days or weeks, unless we consciously review it.
If you want to have any hope of achieving the envisioned future you outlined in your Life Plan and making the impact you want to have on those who matter most to you, then you’ve got to make reviewing your Life Plan a regular part of your routine.
Review It Regularly
Once you’ve written your Life Plan, commit to reviewing it daily for the first 90 days, and weekly after that.
Yes, this takes time — but reviewing your Life Plan frequently is the best way to ensure that it doesn’t just become another rote document. Instead, reviewing your plan will keep it fresh in your mind and heart so that you can start to see it shape your decisions and actions.
And because it’s fairly short, you’ll likely have it just about memorized by the end of those 90 days — that way, you can be continually mindful of your commitments between each weekly review session.
To help you get started, we’ve created the Living Forward 30-Day Challenge. The challenge includes daily reminders, inspiration and tips via email to keep you focused on your Life Plan and inspire you to get the most out of it. Click here to learn more.
Assess It Quarterly
While your weekly review is a great time to do a light check-in on each of your accounts and commitments, your quarterly review is a chance to dive a little deeper.
When you sit down with your Life Plan each quarter, you can take a big-picture look at how you’ve been doing over the past three months. You’ll see areas where you’re improving and holding strong, and other areas where week after week, you’re missing the mark on the commitments you’ve set for yourself.
Living your Life Plan is about progress, not perfection. But by taking a broad view of your Life Plan every quarter, you’ll be better able to course-correct and avoid drifting far off-track. And if you’ve met some goals in the past three months, you can take note and carry that momentum into the next quarter.
Adjust It Yearly
We say the weekly Life Plan review is essential, the quarterly review is helpful and the yearly review is critical. Like your Life Plan Day, this is a chance to take a thorough look at your plan and think a little more critically about what you wrote.
A lot can happen in a year. Maybe you started a new job, got married or had a child. Or maybe you lost a loved one or received a life-changing diagnosis. Your life changes, so your Life Plan should change as well.
Your yearly review is an opportunity to assess whether your Life Plan aligns with your current priorities, and to adjust it accordingly. We’ve even created a yearly review guide to walk you through the process.
Some years you might change your Life Plan more; some years, less. But by taking one day each year to review and rewrite it, you’ll ensure that your Life Plan can continually guide you toward the life you want to live and the impact you want to have on others.
Keep It Alive
It would be easy to write your Life Plan and then leave it buried under papers on your desk or stowed away in a drawer — out of sight and out of mind.
But wouldn’t it be a shame if you walked away from your Life Plan Day and nothing changed?
If you’ve taken the time to create a Life Plan, then you know there’s a gap between where you are and where you want to be. So let your Life Plan be your roadmap — refer back to it regularly to stay on track and move toward a life you love.
Get Your Yearly Review Guide
Because the yearly Life Plan review is so important, we’ve created a free guide to help you get the most out of the process. Click here to download it.
This is an updated version of an earlier post, originally published Dec. 12, 2017.