[DARE #14] – Unstuck Yet? – What Went Wrong in 2014?


It’s the last Sunday challenge of the year.  Last week I encouraged you to figure out ways to delegate yourself out of your current job to a better one – it was a forward-looking task.

Now, let’s take one step back.

Be warned: this one is uncomfortable – for everyone but it’s about increasing our self-awareness.

If we increase our self-awareness around the promises that we make to ourselves

If we increase our self-awareness around the expectations we place on ourselves

If we increase our self-awareness around why we have unfulfilled promises and unsatisfying expectations

…then we can get to the root of what it will really take to achieve our desires in the new year.

So, dare #14 is for you to revisit your 2014 New Year’s resolutions. 

Crack open that old notebook.

Read your list.

  • So did you eat healthier?
  • Are your finances in a better place?
  • Did you get that makeover?
  • How did that career transition go or not go?
  • Are you in a new home?
  • Did your business grow?
  • Did you launch your website?
  • Are you happier today than when 2014 began?

Think through your 2014 New Year’s resolutions

Cross out the ones you got done and celebrate those

Highlight the ones that you didn’t get done in 2014

The assignment is not to dwell on missed opportunities but to figure out why you left so much on the table.

It’s inevitable.

Chances are (unless you had few or zero 2014 resolutions) that a few big ones did not happen

Chances are that year after year the same one is haunting you

When looking at those unresolved dreams – ask yourself

  • Did I ever really want that or was I trying to fulfill someone else’s expectations?
  • Was I really ready to sacrifice my sleep or family or [x] time for that goal?
  • Did I continue to surround myself with unsupportive folks?
  • How well equipped was I by myself to reach that goal?
  • Was I setting myself up for disappointments by aiming for unrealistic goals?
  • Was I seriously sober when I wrote that? (Just kidding, maybe?)

Here’s an example of one of my own 2014 unfulfilled goals:

My goal was to have in place a do-it-yourself product so that when I birthed my twins I could continue to sustain my business while going from being a mom of one little boy to three boys.

So how did I net out?

I created this sales page.

I sent a note to my database 1.5 months prior to going on maternity leave.

I sold some packages.

And then proceeded the sound of crickets.

I went on maternity leave for about four months.

And instead of selling this DIY packet…former and new clients wanted more of me and my time rather than less of me and my time

In other words, you guys didn’t really want to do-it-yourselves

You prefer a partner

An accomplice

A sound boarding

A strategic career expert to give you confidence in knowing that you are doing everything right or who will help you think through what you’re doing wrong based on years of experience

So after reviewing this 2014 goal

Getting to know hundreds of you

And evaluating my anticipated 2015 “best” life


My plan is to offer higher-touch, even more tailored, deeper diving career coaching options to fewer clients in 2015


You want more of me and I want more of you.

Let me explain.

You want me to be accessible the night before your interview

You want me to iron out your interview answers

You want me to uncover usable insights around your interviewers

In turn,

I want to teach you the most effective ways to outsmart your competition based on your specific situation

I want to show you how to work a room filled with prospective colleagues, leaders or direct reports while taking into account what it will take to get YOU comfortable in a stressful setting

I want to meet you one-on-one

Now, there is no sales page (yet).

My rationale behind my example is not to sell you on my brainchild – instead I want to show you how you can think about your 2014 unrealized resolutions to inform your 2015 goals so that they will have a higher likelihood of success.

Now, it’s time to reevaluate your 2014 resolutions

Be honest with yourself

Uncover why some never happened

And use those insights so that 2015 is more productive and fulfilling.

Happy Sunday,


Melissa Llarena

Melissa helps movers and shakers up to those in the corner office rediscover what makes them unique so that they can land their dream job in a forward-thinking company where their ideas are listened to, valued, and supported.

She brings insights from having worked in 16-business units (including Human Resources) in NY, Paris, and London. Additionally, in her former corporate career, she worked on billion-dollar brands for P&G and on IBM for Ogilvy & Mather. Later, as the founder and CEO of Career Outcomes Matter, Melissa created a 3-step “sellable strengths” process which has been the centerpiece of her clients' results.

Melissa applies this method consistently to support mid-level professionals up to the c-suite to get into Fortune Global 500 organizations and agencies. She studied Psychology at NYU and earned her MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth.

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