Photo by John Haslan

Happy New Year’s Eve!

Whether you’re headed to a party, or headed to the living room with a bowl of popcorn while the kids sleep, New Year’s Eve is a great day for reflection. A whole year has passed since last New Year’s Eve. You’re a year older. Are you a year wiser?

Below are 20 questions I use each year as a springboard to reflect on the past 365 days. Use these Reflection Questions however you see fit. Feel free to think over these throughout your day. But if you’d like to be a bit more intentional with them, every year I provide a free PDF download over on Simple Mom — head over there to download the document.

Want to answer these questions solo? Grab a cup of coffee and a pen, and use the space provided on the first three pages of the free download. Want to chat over the answers with your spouse or with friends? Use the last page to cut each question into squares, and then toss them in a hat to draw, one at a time.

Then tomorrow, head over to Simple Mom for another round of questions. This time, you’ll look ahead at 2011. What are your plans? Your hopes? What would you like to happen for you
personally, for your children, for your family? Be intentional, and jot down some ideas so that you can create a workable plan.

20 Questions for a New Year’s Eve Reflection

1. What was the single best thing that happened this past year?

2. What was the single most challenging thing that happened?

3. What was an unexpected joy this past year?

4. What was an unexpected obstacle?

5. Pick three words to describe 2010.

6. Pick three words your spouse would use to describe your 2010 (don’t ask them; guess based on how you think your spouse sees you).

7. Pick three words your spouse would use to describe their 2010 (again, without asking).

8. What were the best books you read this year?

9. With whom were your most valuable relationships?

10. What was your biggest personal change from January to December of this past year?

11. In what way(s) did you grow emotionally?

12. In what way(s) did you grow spiritually?

13. In what way(s) did you grow physically?

14. In what way(s) did you grow in your relationships with others?

15. What was the most enjoyable part of your work (both professionally and at home)?

16. What was the most challenging part of your work (both professionally and at home)?

17. What was your single biggest time waster in your life this past year?

18. What was the best way you used your time this past year?

19. What was biggest thing you learned this past year?

20. Create a phrase or statement that describes 2010 for you.

Happy reflecting! And pass over that bowl of popcorn.

  • H2OMagazine

    Celebrating new year should reflect a renewed opportunity to revive our hopes and aspirations. Indeed, every year comes with its own ups and downs. What defines a successful year is by how much we learnt from mistakes and how we grabbed and used opportunities. We must reflect on this on the new year eve, and make sure we lead a life of happiness and contentment. Would like to thank the author to explaining it all.

  • Jessica @ These Are The Days

    I love reflecting and making goals. Thanks for the 20 Questions! New Year’s is one of my favorite holidays. I’m all about starting fresh and moving forward.

  • kendal

    wow – a terrific list of questions! i’m starting a new women’s group at church next week. I think i’ll do the “hat” activity with them as an ice breaker. thanks! and happy new year!

  • Stacey

    These are great! Thanks so much for sharing and helping me to close out 2010 with a great look back on all that God did!

  • Amy

    Great list – I look forward to journaling these and sharing with my MOPS group. I wonder – will you have a list for looking forward after we have done some reflection? I guess I’ll wait and see. Thank you for the encouragement your blog provides. I’ve been struggling to find encouragement as an at home mom.

    • Tsh Oxenreider

      Yep! Tomorrow I’ll have questions and topics for thinking about 2011 goals. It’ll be on my blog, Simple Mom.

  • Robin ~ PENSIEVE

    Tsh…g r e a t list of questions, and to be perfectly honest, some of the answers are difficult. Which, to me, means they NEED to be asked! Looking forward to your future questions; I’m already thinking they might provide great motivation :).

  • Minnesotamom

    I used your list last year to reflect, and I found it very helpful. I hope to be better this year about keeping my goals in front of me on a regular basis. In 2009 I blogged about it each month, which proved to be good accountability. Maybe I’ll try that again. Thanks for the PDF!

  • Pingback: Reflection Questions « The Girl in the Middle()

  • Beth Williams

    Celebrating New Year’s Eve should include a reflection of all the good and bad things in the year and a look forward to making next year even better – especially regarding your Christianity and quiet times with God.

    I am a closet listie, love making lists and spread sheets. My hubby and I will use your list to reminisce.

  • Pingback: and here it is: the last day of December « Overlapped's Weblog()

  • Jessica Chavez

    This is GREAT! I’ve been home in the afternoons a lot because of a severe case of allergy to cold (not kidding :( ) and it caused me to become very reflective and this are great questions to end the year!! Looking forward to seeing the questions for next year!!! Happy New Year!!!

  • Pingback: Weekend Wanderings()

  • Pingback: Super Woman in 2011! « Our Mellifluous Life()

  • Grace

    Thank you so much for sharing these! It was so helpful for me to take a few moments and reflect on last year before I dive headfirst into this year. I want to be the kind of person who stops and savors and considers and doesn’t take for granted. This kind of thing helps! Here’s my blog post with my answers to most of the questions!!

  • Pingback: My starred list » life, laughter and little things()

  • Pingback: Yearly planning with a file crate system | Simple Mom()