Podcast 038: Planning for your year ahead

Podcast 038 Planning your year ahead

In todays podcast “Planning your year ahead” Aaron helps us to think about the areas we need to plan for our best year in 2021. We look at our personal and professional lives and set about planning eight areas to develop the best possible start to the year.

Planning for your year ahead

Planning for your year ahead

One of the most important steps we can take for our own development and to be able to provide the best possible service to our young people is to have a clear plan for our year ahead. Most people go through life hoping things will happen for them. They wing it and then they wonder why their dreams never come to fruition.

One of the ways I begin each year is by doing a ‘Wheel of Life’ assessment. It helps me to look at where I am at and where i would like to be. It also helps us to look at the areas of our lives that we need to work on.

The wheel of life measures eight segments of our life:


This category looks at all the aspects of your career. Your employment, your education, your job satisfaction. We need to spend some time unpacking all aspects of our career and the areas we might need to develop.

Is your career where you want it to be by now? Are you heading in the right direction? Do you have the level of qualifications you need for your career path?

A good help for this might be Podcast Episode 007: Career Development.


This category sometimes goes by the terms “financial security” or “money,” but it refers to your success in managing, budgeting, saving and investing your money. This is an area that human services professionals are notoriously bad at (we don’t earn a lot and no one teaches us how to make what we get work for us in the long term).

Are you earning enough income to satisfy your current needs? Are you financially setup for future growth in wealth? Do you have superannuation or retirement savings plans?

One book we recommend is The Barefoot Investor. It’s a great start to getting on top of our finance. We also recommend you find a good accountant!!!


There are many aspects of our health that we need to look at and in our very first podcast episode we talk about four of them that can help you start this process. Some people prefer to split this category into a physical and emotional distinction only.

How physically healthy are you? Are you satisfied with your level of fitness? Are you satisfied with your diet? When was your last GP check up?

Family and Friends

Many people prefer to divide this into two separate categories, but for a start just use the one. When we have struggles in our family and friendships it will inevitably spill over into the rest of our life categories.

Is your family supportive of you? Are you supportive of your family? Are your friends supportive of you? Do you have good friends?

Romantic Relationship

You might call this category “dating” or “life partner” depending on your personal situation and preference. The gist of this one is do you have someone you are intimate with? That you fully share your life with?

Do you feel loved? How often are you expressing love to others? Do you spend quality time with your partner? Do you know your love language?

Personal Growth

Sometimes this category is labeled “self-development” or “learning,” this category represents the time you spend working toward your personal goals. How are you working towards a better version of yourself?

Do you think of your abilities highly? Do you respect and love yourself? Do you appreciate yourself? How would others rate your contribution to society or them as individuals? How focused are you on personal growth? Are you satisfied with your direction? Are you trying new experiences and seeking to learn? How connected are you to the inner and outer world? Are you satisfied with your relationship with your spiritual being?

Fun and Recreation

You can also label this “leisure” or “social.” This category is all about being excited by life. Being full of zest.

Are you enjoying your life and making it fun? Are you satisfied with the level of activity that you do? Are you engaging friends and socializing to your satisfaction levels? Do you have hobbies or interests that keep you going?

Physical Environment

Your physical environment is all of the physical spaces you spend time. Your home, your workspace, your bedroom, your car, basically wherever you find yourself being.

Is your home clean and tidy? is it affordable? Do you have a space for everything and is everything in its space? Is your desk clean at the end of each day? Do you have good air flow and natural light?

Planning for your year ahead

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Aaron Garth

Aaron Garth is the Executive Director of Ultimate Youth Worker. Aaron has worked as a youth worker in a number of settings including local church, street drug and alcohol outreach, family services, residential care, local government and youth homelessness since 2003. Aaron is a regular speaker at camps, retreats, & youth work training events and is a dedicated to seeing a more professional youth sector in Australia. Aaron is a graduate of RMIT University and an alumnus of their youth work program. He lives in Melbourne with his wife Jennifer & their daughters Hope, Zoe, Esther, Niamh and son Ezra.

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