1. Set intentions. Identify what you want to achieve on during your retreat. Keep in mind there isn’t any right or wrong way to set intentions. It’s just a matter of what you want to focus on during your time together.

Last year, for example, my husband and I wrote our intentions down on paper and then taped them to a wall to serve as a constant reminder of what we intended to accomplish and how we wanted to spend our time.

A few of my intentions included being fully present and receiving insight on how to authentically make a vastly huge difference in my business and achieve my next break-through income goal for the new year.

2. Share celebrations, successes, gratitude and acknowledgements towards your spouse and those who have helped you succeed. This was really fun for me. It’s easy for me to bypass the success part.

It seems as soon as I’ve accomplished something, I’m ready to move on to my next big goal. It’s extremely important to acknowledge your successes so that you fully integrate them and see yourself as the new person you’ve become.

Take some time to acknowledge your spouse for things you appreciate about them. You’ll also want to make sure you acknowledge their accomplishments and the transformations that you saw take place for them over the past year. This can range from both big things and also the little things.

One of my acknowledgements for my husband was how much I appreciated him taking care of me when I was sick. He went the extra mile to make a homemade coughing formula when I had a really bad cold last year. You’ll also want to acknowledge all the other people in your life who have helped you succeed over the past year.

3. Get clarity about where you’re currently “at”. Most of us are so eager to focus on the goal setting process, that we bypass gaining additional clarity about our current situation.

Be willing to be honest and explore the good, bad and the ugly of your current state of affairs. Identify what’s working and not working right now in your financial life, career and personal life.

How much money are you making? How much total debt are you carrying? What is your relationship like with your partner? What things “bug” you about them that you haven’t communicated recently (or in a clear, calm way)?

Think beyond finances to areas like housekeeping, sharing family chores and work-life balance. This is very powerful to discuss – but be forewarned, it can also be an obvious hot button! Most of the time we let things go unsaid, and resentments can build up over time. It’s a great way to come “clean” and move forward.

Reflect on how you are individually doing in the following areas: career, health, marriage/family, fun/leisure time, friends/community, spiritual and financial. In other words, think about your entire life, not just isolated segments of it.

4. Create a vision for your marriage/family. This is a new category for my husband and me. We talked about wanting to be more intentional with how we treat each other as a couple.

We’ve been together 11 years now (married seven). It’s easy to assume that you know who your partner is after you’ve been together for a while.

We decided to be more intentional about intimacy in terms of “into-me-you-see” which, in essence, means really seeking to understand each other’s perspective instead of jumping to conclusions and not fully listening.

We wrote out two to three sentences to post on our bulletin board at home to serve as an ongoing reminder about how we want to treat each other.

5. Identify your exciting, “impossible” future. Now we come to the really fun part! Identify your goals and dreams for the upcoming year.

I highly encourage you to come from a place of identifying dreams and goals that are exciting for you, instead of merely what you think is possible.

Also, spend some time reflecting on why particular goals are important to you. By gaining a deeper understanding of the importance of those goals, you will be able to access inspiration for taking action during challenging times when motivation is at a low and you’d rather not make the effort.

6. Get clear on how you will achieve your goals. This is the really crucial part. Think about how you will achieve your goals. Ask yourself, “What is currently missing that, if I had in place, would help me achieve my goals?”.

I found that I was clear on how to achieve many of my goals, and I didn’t need to ask myself what was missing.

However, on the bigger and challenging ones (I had about three of them) I asked myself this question, which helped me gain clarity regarding the specific action steps that were needed to pursue those goals.

Live and Love Richly Bite-Size Action Step

Okay, here’s the exciting part!... ask yourself if you’re going to read this article for mere entertainment value, or if you’re actually going to do something different in your life!

1. Print out this article and place it in your calendar in the month of October or November, so you can start thinking about and planning your retreat two months out.

2. Talk to your partner (or a close friend) about scheduling a year- end retreat right now for next year. Don’t wait to see if you’re able to take the time off from work. Just commit to scheduling it now, and work everything else in your busy schedule around it. Then, bring this article to your retreat so you can follow the format.

If Taking Time Off From Work is a Challenge

If time off from work and family is a concern, perhaps you could start out with going away for two to three days and then build up to five. If you just don’t have the time to escape, set up a few mini Financial Dates with your partner to go through the year-end retreat format.

My husband and I have already scheduled our next year-end retreat. We usually decide where we’ll go in December (so far we’ve picked places here in Montana and plan on driving about two to four hours away from our home).

Lastly, make sure you purchase a journal to record your goals and visions. It’s fun to look back at your progress through the years!

Author's Bio: 

Leslie Cunningham specializes in working with women entrepreneurs who experience fear and self-doubt in their ability to consistently make more money in their business. The end result that women achieve through following Leslie's advice and expertise is that they are able to permanently get off the emotional financial roller coaster ride and break into six-figures and beyond. http://impactandprofits.com/