And so here we are at the end of another year. It must be time for a year end review.

But before we go there, gosh doesn’t time seem to go by so quickly these days. Not sure about you, but this year seemed to feel a little harder than others. Maybe it was because we had greater expectations for this year after the last two. Or possibly it was because we were all just a little more exhausted than usual after the last two years of lockdowns and desperate for life to return to ‘normal’. Or maybe it also has to do with the possibility of recession, war in Ukraine, floods, supply chain issues, inflation, staff shortages, and Covid ramping up again.

It was a LOT for one little year. And that got me thinking.

Normally, as we head into the holiday break, it’s a good time to suggest looking at your business or your finances and looking at what worked, what didn’t, how you might make things work better in 2023 and setting your goals for next year. After all, a quiet week either  whilst you’re on leave or when you’re first back in the office is a great time to do that.

But this year, maybe it’s time for a different kind of year end review.

What if you did a much longer and more holistic review? Rather than just looking at the last 12 months so you can plan for the future and keep moving forward, what if we took a bit of a different approach? What if we asked ourselves different questions?

Far too often in life and business, we set goals, we reach them, we tick the box and ask what’s next and move on with barely a moment to recognise, much less celebrate those achievements. And although we might achieve good, even great, things, after a while it can begin to feel like a never ending slog with no real finish line. This is doubly so if you’re in business where the cycles for everything seem to be moving increasingly towards warp-speed.

So let’s change that.


With a different focus for this year’s year end review.

  1. Find a moment during your holiday break, take yourself somewhere where you can just be and think for a bit.
  2. Close your eyes (go with me here – it’s likely to put you in the right headspace for the exercise) and take a slow, deep breath in through your nose, feeling the air fill your tummy and then slowly exhaling through your mouth. Repeat at least twice more.
  3. Think back to the start of your business (or working career, or marriage, whatever your plans centre around).
  4. Write down as many achievements since starting as you can remember – big and small. Think about the things you didn’t think you could do; the things that surprised the heck out of you when they happened; the tiny things that opened other doors as a result; think about the people you’ve helped and the times you’ve laughed and celebrated, etc.
  5. Think about who deserves your thanks for helping you achieve what you did. Maybe send them a note or give them a call to let them know you appreciated their input.
  6. Think about and, more importantly, write down what you learned as a result of each experience and/or reaching each of those milestones.
  7. Which of those have been a critical influence for what you do now
  8. For each key learning, think about how that might affect what you do next and how you move forward in 2022.
  9. Only once you’ve done this exercise, should you even begin to think about goal setting for 2023.

What you might find in doing this exercise is that sometimes things that have made it onto your list might not have felt like a huge achievement at the time, but looking back with the benefit of hindsight, you can see that they played a much larger role in getting you where you are now.

For me, one of the key things I’ve learned, beyond a shadow of a doubt, is the importance of actually taking a break. Don’t get me wrong, I love what I do here at Mason Lloyd. However, particularly during Covid, when the rules around staffing, benefits and taxation for business owners seemed to change every five minutes and having to a: stay on top of that and b: letting everyone know about it was pretty gruelling at times.

Taking real time away, meant that I was able to let go for a bit, recharge, come back refreshed and ready to get back into whatever was being thrown our way. That made me both a better accountant and a saner human. So I heartily recommend taking a break away from your business if you can possibly find a way to do it.

The Mason Lloyd team and I wish you and yours (be it team and/or family) all the very best for a wonderful Christmas and an easier 2023.

Of course, if we can help you better manage your business planning or your business/personal tax affairs, you can call us on 6023 1700 or connect with us via Facebook or LinkedIn.

Got a question? Get in touch

If you've got financial or business questions, or you just want to run something by us, we'd be delighted to really talk to you – in person, over the phone - call us on 02 6023 1700 - or you can use the form below and we'll get back to you.

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About us:

Lloyd Accounting is a boutique accounting firm based in North Albury that operates with the sole purpose of making your tax and business affairs as easy as possible. For us, it's about really understanding what it is you're wanting to achieve and then using our experience and expertise to help facilitate that.

Please note - our new location:

Lloyd Accounting is now located at 932 Waugh Rd, North Albury, NSW.

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