self assessment :: identifying areas of improvement

It’s often more natural to assess and identify areas of improvement in others, especially when working with a client or if strategic assessments are part of your professional portfolio – but what about when it comes to you.

A personal heart-to-heart. Have you checked in with yourself lately to identify areas where you can improve? Taking a self inventory is incredibly empowering not too mention valuable to those you work with and support. Take a moment to ask yourself: What’s been added to my plate over the past few months? What activities have fallen off the radar – and gone incomplete? Are there areas of value that are no longer getting attention?

We’re always juggling something. 257772890_ead23e6a38_mFor me, it’s several freelance projects and a baby on the way. It’s easy to get caught up in everything and simply look away from items that have gone ignored. However, being able to acknowledge where you can improve makes you better equipped to tackle whatever gets thrown your way. You’re aware and will be able to appropriately allocate yourself to the most important tasks. This type of self awareness is sometimes (and too often) misinterpreted as admitting weakness or failure. Wrong.

Self assessment is about being able to review all aspects of your working self – the good, the bad and the ugly – then doing something to improve the bad and the ugly.

Take manageable bites. Self improvement doesn’t require a complete overhaul, start small. For me, I know “blog commenting” has fallen to the wayside. For a while I was simply kicking myself (…so not a productive response). I read so many wonderful posts daily, but failed to truly contribute or participate in the conversation. It’s something I wanted to fix and focus on – right now.

No time like the present. Therefore each and every day I’ve added to my daily work list: comment on one blog post. Just one. This might seem like a marginal, arbitrary goal, but one is better than zero. One is manageable, I can take my time, be intentional in my contribution, and will enable me to set up a new daily routine. Will I increase this target number, probably, but not yet.

For now, it’s just one comment daily. It’s about identifying an area of improvement and setting up a realistic, non threatening goal to achieve in a sustainable way. From there, I’ll take stock and improve further. The constant self assessing results in an organic checks and balances system that will ensure I’m always learning and offering the best istrategies and solutions to my clients and contributions to my communities.

[Image: Work courtesy of alexanderljung, Flickr]

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