For many years I brushed New Years aside. The rebel in me didn’t want to succumb to an arbitrary date being my mandate to make a resolution. Then I changed my mind. The date may be arbitrary, but it holds meaning in our culture – even if that meaning is a new tax year ;)
I now see a New Year on the calendar as an opportunity. It’s an opportunity to look back and look forward, while staying present on the ride.
Let’s break this down – my hope is that after reading this article you will be inspired by all you DID accomplish in 2022, and look forward for what some of your hopes and dreams are for 2023.
Here are 3 simple steps:
1.Look back to one year ago: What are the major things that happened in the first 3 months or so? Then look back at late last spring and early summer, and then the fall as you moved into winter. Write down some of the things that happened. It could be an external thing such as getting a raise, or having a baby, or being impacted by a death. Maybe it was an internal thing: working with your inner boundaries, new self-awareness, self-confidence of self-trust. Give yourself a few minutes to write out what comes to mind.
Sometimes this exercise helps you see the progress you did make in your inner life and outer life, especially if you felt like not much happened over the last year. And, there is always a dose of luck/magic/grace to life, some of good things that come our way isn’t always from our own clear effort, lucky breaks do happen. I was once told that “You have to be good to get lucky.”
2.Look Forward. There are a few ways to do this. You might want to get out a piece of paper and divide it into 12 squares with the month written in each square and write down a few things you hope for each month. Or, you might journal about a few key dreams, intentions or goals you want to work towards. Some people like to use imagery and either draw, paint, or cut out photos of things that inspire them (also known as a vision board) And for some people, it might just be sitting on your bed, or the couch and giving yourself the grace and space of thinking-time. Let your mind wander as you think about what you’d like to see unfold over the coming year. You can’t do this wrong. Do what inspires you as you think through your intentions.
You might leave it there. There is potency in the seed of intention.
There is also strength in defining a plan. I recommend doing monthly check-ins to check in with yourself and reassess your goals and intentions and to give yourself the space to see if there is something you want to do differently.
Remember, there is a time to do. Some call it work, grind or hustle. And there is a time to be. Some call it surrender, pausing, meditating, trusting.
Both are important. We live in a culture that tends to honour the GO and dismisses the PAUSE, but the pause is just as important. It’s often in the pause that luck/magic/grace can enter.
3.Be Present. This takes us to the final step – whatever your goals are, take the time to be present. The practice of pausing and taking a few deep breaths to tune in to our body in this moment is one way to return to presence. There is also making the most of life right now while it is happening. Sometimes we need to stop striving and simply enjoy where we are. Presence is also part of the power of being, the space of grace, and what some might call magic or luck.
I wish you a very happy new year :)