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The 12 Week Year

Free 12 week year planner to show you how to achieve more in 12 weeks than others achieve in 12 months.

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The 12 Week Year: Get More Done in 12 Weeks than Others Do in 12 Months

Most of us never really reach our potential and we don’t live the life we could live. According to Brian P. Moran and Michael Lennington, the authors of the book “The 12 Week Year”, most people can double or triple their income just by consistently applying what they already know. They already know what they need to do to achieve their goals but they do not consistently execute these actions. Take weight loss, for example. Everyone knows what they need to do to lose weight, yet many people are still overweight. We know we have to eat less and exercise more, yet we do not do that consistently.

The authors of the 12 week year book, claim that in order to reach your potential, all you need to do is to consistently execute your plans. Effective execution is the best way to accomplish all your goals. The idea is not to work harder, but to focus on the activities that matter most and get them done. The 12 Week Year has the power to increase your income two, three, or four times. It also has the power to help you reach similar goals in all areas of your life!

Please note: This is an unofficial summary and workbook created to help you understand and apply the principles outlined in the book. For full disclaimer details, click here.

Most people and companies set annual goals and annual work plans. The 12 Week Year explains how you can be more productive and effective if you set 12-week goals instead of 12-month goals. When your deadline is closer, you are less likely to become complacent. You will feel a sense of urgency and therefore get a lot more done. You stop wasting time on tasks that do not bring you closer to your goals. I don’t know about you, but I can totally relate to this.

I am a procrastinator and I will put anything and everything off until I reach the deadline. When I reach the deadline I will get it done, but until then I waste time. When I have yearly goals, I tend to do less all year and then make a bigger effort close to the end of the year. Whereas, when I have 12-week goals the deadline is always near enough that I never lose sight of it. Therefore, I start working sooner and put things off less. When you have a goal and a deadline you will achieve a lot more.

The goal is to perform at your best and achieve the goals you are capable of. The 12 Week Year method shows you how to perform at your best and achieve the things in life that matter most to you through effective execution. The idea is to consistently take action on the things that will help you reach your goals and shape your success. You will also lower your stress, build your confidence, and feel better about yourself.

The concepts described in the book apply equally well for individuals as well as groups, both personally and professionally.

Whereas you can read and implement this 12 week year summary, you really should read the book since it provides so much more detail and examples that will help you create your own goals and implementation plan.

Brian Moran 12 Week Year Book Summary

Introduction to the 12 Week Year Book

Overview of the Concept

The 12 Week Year is a revolutionary approach to productivity and goal achievement that redefines the year in a new and compact framework. Instead of the traditional 12-month cycle, this method operates on a 12-week timeline. This strategy is designed to bring a sense of urgency, focus, and clarity to goal-setting and execution.

The core concept lies in treating each 12-week span as its own ‘year’. This mindset shift encourages individuals and teams to plan, execute, and evaluate their goals within this compressed time frame. It’s about maximizing efficiency and effectiveness, ensuring that the most important tasks are not just set but actively pursued and achieved within a quarter of the conventional year.

The Philosophy Behind a 12-Week Planning Cycle

The philosophy of the 12 Week Year is grounded in the understanding that shorter planning cycles lead to increased efficiency, greater focus, and better execution. It’s based on the principle that the limitations of time can actually enhance productivity. When we have a whole year to achieve goals, it’s easy to become complacent, to procrastinate, and to lose sight of our objectives. The 12-week cycle counteracts this by creating a sense of urgency and a continuous planning and review process.

This philosophy also embraces the idea of rhythm and regular reassessment. By breaking down the year into smaller, more manageable segments, individuals and teams can stay more engaged with their goals, regularly track progress, and quickly adapt to changes or obstacles.

Advantages of 12 Week Planning Over Annual Planning

  • Enhanced Predictability: 12 week planning offers greater predictability than annual planning. Short-term plans reduce the stacking of assumptions that often plague long-term planning, making outcomes more foreseeable.
  • Increased Focus: Unlike annual plans that often spread efforts too thin across many objectives, 12 week planning concentrates on one to three critical goals. This focused approach leads to more effective execution and significant impact.
  • Structured for Action: 12 week plans are designed not just as theoretical strategies but as practical, actionable blueprints. This structure ensures that plans are not merely documented but actively implemented, leading to real results.
  • Regular Fresh Starts: Every 12 week cycle is treated as a new year, providing regular opportunities for reassessment and a fresh start, in contrast to the once-a-year reset of traditional annual planning.
  • Activity-Based Planning: These plans are grounded in both numbers and activities, creating a direct link between daily actions and the achievement of specific goals. This approach contrasts with the more objective-based nature of annual plans.

Your Vision and Long-Term Goals

At the heart of the 12 Week Year approach is the concept of a compelling vision. This vision acts as a guiding star, providing direction and purpose to your actions.

A strong vision is more than just a goal; it’s a vivid picture of what you aspire to achieve or become. It’s the foundational element that fuels motivation and drives action. A compelling vision serves several key purposes:

  1. Direction: It provides a clear direction for your efforts and decisions.
  2. Motivation: It keeps you motivated, especially when facing challenges or setbacks.
  3. Focus: It helps maintain focus on what is truly important, aligning actions with desired outcomes.
The authors emphasize that vision defines the direction you want to go and the motivation to act, but vision without action is just a dream. It is the consistent action that turns a dream into reality.
Your Vision and GoalsPin

Image | Word | Editable PDF

Use this goal worksheet to write each of the three goals.

Before you start, you will need to create a vision to know where you want to get to. Without a vision, you will have no emotional connection to your tasks, and your chances of success will not be as great. There are 3 time horizons you’ll want to focus your vision on:

Long-term aspirations

How would you like to see your life in the long term?

Mid-term goals

What would you like to achieve 3 years from today? Relate to personal and professional goals.

12 Week Goals

These are your goals for the next 12 weeks. This is your vision and where you want to be 12 weeks from now.

Techniques for Crafting a Compelling Personal and Professional Vision

Crafting a compelling vision requires introspection and a clear understanding of what you value and desire. Here are some techniques to help you develop your vision:

  1. Reflect on Core Values: Identify your core values and what matters most to you. Your vision should be a reflection of these values.
  2. Visualize Success: Imagine what success looks like for you in both personal and professional aspects. Be as detailed as possible in your visualization.
  3. Use Vivid and Inspiring Language: Articulate your vision using language that is vivid and inspiring. This enhances emotional connection and commitment to the vision.
  4. Write It Down: Documenting your vision makes it more concrete and actionable. A written vision is a powerful reminder of what you’re working towards.
  5. Think Long-Term, but Be Adaptable: While your vision should be long-term, it should also be flexible enough to adapt to changing circumstances or insights.

Implementation Plan

Your goals must be:

  • Specific and measurable. See SMART goals for a detailed explanation.
  • Stated positively. Focus on something positive that you want to happen.
  • Realistic but require effort to achieve. You don’t want your goals to be too easy to achieve, but you also don’t want them to be too difficult to achieve. Try to find goals that challenge you but are achievable with reasonable effort.
  • Find ways to hold yourself accountable. Accountability keeps you working hard to make consistent, steady progress, and to achieve your goals. The ultimate aim of accountability is to continually ask yourself what you can do to reach your goals.
  • Time-bound. You need a deadline to get yourself moving.

Step 1 – Set your goals

Set 1 to 3 specific and measurable goals for the upcoming twelve week year. Print the 12 week year PDF below and write down each of your goals. You might need more than one goal but you don’t want too many goals. You need to stay focused.

How do you decide which goals to focus on? Start with your vision and then rate yourself in the seven areas of life balance (i.e., spiritual, spouse/partner, family, community, physical, personal, and business). The authors suggest using a scale from 1 to 10 to rate your level of satisfaction. A score of 10 is the best that you can be in an area and a score of 1 would be the worst. See Wheel of Life

Step 2 – Develop a plan to achieve your goals

Keep your plan simple yet effective. Tactics are the actions you will take to reach your 12-week goals. List a few tactics or actions that you will need to complete to achieve your plan. Your plan must contain the top priorities that will add the most value and have the greatest impact. The 12-week plan contains all the tactics or actions you need to execute in order to achieve your 12-week goals. Each tactic has a due date.

Print the 12 week year templates PDF, Word, or Image version. Write one to three goals. Add the tasks that are most likely to help you reach these goals.

Step 3 – Create a Weekly Plan

The weekly plan takes your 12-week plan and divides it into weekly and daily actions. The weekly plan organizes your week and keeps you focused. This is not a weekly to-do-list but rather the critical strategic tasks that you need to complete in order for you to achieve your goals.

To create your weekly plan, you will need to refer to your 12-week plan from the previous step. The weekly plan is pretty much one-twelfth of the 12-week plan above.

Here is a sample weekly plan template to add your daily actions for each week. In the left column, give each action a score. Use this score to measure what percentage of your tasks you completed each week.

Spend the first 15 or 20 minutes at the beginning of each week to review your progress from the past week and plan the upcoming one.

The first five minutes of each day should be spent reviewing your weekly plan to plan that day’s activities.

Step 4 – Complete each action the week it is due

With the 12 Week Year, a year is equivalent to 12 weeks, a month is now a week, and a week is now a day. To do this, you need to focus on the actions that will have the most impact. You cannot get sidetracked. You have to stick to the plan. If you have decided to do something one day, then don’t stop until you get it done. Ensure that your critical tasks are completed each week.

Step 5 – Measure your progress with the Weekly Scorecard 

The best way to measure your execution is to work from a weekly plan and evaluate the percentage of tactics completed.

You are not taking your success into account, but rather the percentage of things you completed out of those that you planned to complete.

At the end of each week, spend some time evaluating your performance. Block out time each week to score and plan your week. How did you score? What were your successes? How could you have been more effective?

If you do not reach your goals, try to think about what you can do to be more effective and get more done.

According to the authors of the twelve week year, if you successfully complete 85% of the activities in your weekly plan, then you will most likely reach your goals. Even if you don’t reach 85%, keep applying the system and trying to improve your scores. You don’t have to be perfect but try to be consistent and give it your best.

Planning and Reflection

When you have completed your 12-week period you take a break, celebrate, reflect, and re-energize just like you would do at the end of the year. Celebrate your progress and accomplishments. If you didn’t achieve all your goals, then the next “year” is right around the corner and you have another opportunity to reach your goals. You will have a clean start four times a year instead of once a year. You have four times to reflect and make the changes you need to reach your goals instead of one time each year.

12 Week Year Templates

12 Week Year Planner

Typeable PDF111 Pages

12 week year templatesPin

This free printable 12 week year planner includes a 12 week calendar to set your initial goals, a weekly calendar for each of the 12 weeks, and daily planner for each day. There is space to set your goals and review your progress. The 12 week year templates above are not included in this planner so you can use them instead of or in addition to the other templates.

Typeable PDF111 Pages

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About the Author
Photo of NicoleMy name is Nicole and I created this website to share the tools that keep me organized and productive and help me reach my goals. I hope that you will find them helpful too.

The content on this page serves to provide an introduction to the book and to help you understand, recall, and apply the main principles of the original book. It is an unofficial resource and is in no way affiliated with, authorized, approved, licensed, or endorsed by the authors, publishers, or any related entities of the original book. All rights to the book and its contents belong to the original copyright holder.
Our goal is to represent the key ideas of the book accurately, yet these materials should not be considered a replacement for the original work. We encourage readers to engage with the actual book for complete and detailed understanding.
By accessing this page, you acknowledge that the provided content is a supplementary resource and agree to use it under these terms. We disclaim all liability for any inaccuracies or misuse of the information presented here.
For full disclaimer details, click here.

32 thoughts on “The 12 Week Year”

  1. I’ve only listened to part of the 12-week year audiobook and really enjoyed looking at things in a different way. One thing I found interesting in your planner, is putting a score to the tasks. Just a simple as each task a single point if you add them up and divide them, you can get a percentage score of completion. I find that quite enjoyable oh, and I’ve never really thought of doing that simple step on a planner before

  2. Hello,
    The work you’ve done is great! You’re very generous for offering it for free. I have tried the 12 Week Planner Adobe link several times, but I am just looped back to this page. Am I able to access this resource still, or has it been removed?

    • Stacey,
      I am not able to replicate this issue. Did you click on the black button? Once you do, it should open and then you click on the download button (top right corner) to open it.
      I checked it and I had no problem downloading it.

      • Hi, I had the same issue. The problem is you have two black buttons and the first one is not working. But the second one is working fine. And I thank you for your work!
        I’m going to print out and make 3 or more “12 week year” this year! Thank again!

  3. Thank you so much. The book is awesome but I read it and gave it away. I was looking for a reminder about the system and expecting to find information but it is both explained and templates provided. Again, thank you and do pass on my thanks to the author.

  4. Hi I feel that this system can work for me, however the system is requiring me to provide credit card information in order for me to complete the online activation. I do see that it says $0 is there any way I can get the downloads without providing credit card information? Thank you in advance for your help.

    • All the content on 101planners is free and we never ask for credit card information. Could you perhaps have clicked on an ad and tried to purchase something from another company?

  5. Thank you so Much for simplifying and giving us this tool and a planner for life, it has been a great experience for me. God bless

  6. Wow!!!

    I’m blown away! Thank you so much for your generosity. I don’t comment much but I had to thank you for how amazing your are.

  7. Thank you for being so generous and offering these templates for free. You are helping and changing lives for the better! Welldone 🙂

  8. Thank you so much for creating this! I made a video on my social showing people how to get here and it received over 42,000 views. You have helped a lot of people! Thanks again!

  9. I have enjoyed reading the 12-week year and feel that this system is going to change my life. I was about to try and create some documents to use in helping me develop the system as described but decided to google first to see what was available for purchase. I came across your documents and just want you to know that I greatly appreciate your kindness in sharing so freely the system that works for you. Thank you again and may God richly bless you for your generosity. Your templates will save me a ton of time.


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