Time for the yearly transition. One year comes to a close as we anticipate with hope the beginning of a new year. Many of us envision this new year as full of promise and good things. Others of us approach the new year with caution, concerned about the unknowns that are ahead of us. We begin to form our new year’s resolutions, which is of course, part of the bargain. If we promise to make a change, then we will be rewarded with something positive in the new year. So many things to choose from. Exercise more regularly, get more sleep, eat healthier, spend more time with family, get organized, be more efficient in our work, take better care of ourselves, etc. So many of our resolutions recycled year after year, because we haven’t yet been able to fully commit to them. But why? So many of us focused on what’s left to accomplish, rather than on what we have achieved. What happens if we resolve this year to maintain a balance; focus on and give thanks for what we have in our lives as well as focus on what we would like to still achieve. Not letting one overshadow the other. What happens if we set goals that we believe we can truly accomplish rather than goals we think we should accomplish because it will be “good for us”.
Perhaps we start by reflecting on our accomplishments and achievements – the things we are happy about and thankful for that have occurred during this past year. Being careful not to tarnish these accomplishments with associated, but distinct disappointments. When recalling positive events of the last year, allowing the accomplishments to stand alone and giving them their due. It is important to remind ourselves of our capabilities. It is important to give ourselves the gift of self-gratitude and kindness. It will form the foundation for the year to come.
Next, create a vision of yourself in the coming year. Take a few deep breaths to clear your mind and then close your eyes for a moment and allow yourself to envision the direction you would like to go in this year and the things that will happen if you make the changes and choices you would like to make. Allow yourself to experience this vision with your full awareness. Notice any emotion that comes up, or any thoughts or judgements. Make a note of them. Now take a moment to envision the direction and the things that will happen if you don’t make the changes and choices that you hope to make, if you continue to make the same or similar choices you are making now. Same as before, allow yourself to fully experience this vision with the accompanying thoughts and emotions. And next, with both of these visions still in mind, ask yourself which direction you would truly like to go in. Listen closely for the answer from inside you. You may be surprised at what you hear. Ask for guidance from something beyond you, a higher power. Know that this is what will support you as you move towards your goal. Decide what realistic baby steps you will take to get to where you have decided to go and allow for the fact that when you get there, to your desired goal, it may not look exactly the way you thought it might look. You may have to adjust or change course along the way. Just recognize that the forward movement is part of the whole goal. If you feel like it, jot dot a few of your thoughts from this exercise so you can reground yourself in it from time to time throughout the year, and re-evaluate it as needed.
Recognize that you have a choice. It can be a passive choice or an active choice, but either way the choice is yours. How empowering. You can choose your direction for the new year, without the blocks of judgment or self-doubt, but instead with faith in yourself and self-appreciation for your past accomplishments. You can move forward into the new year full of promise, because you have consciously made a choice to pick what you truly want and believe you can realistically achieve in the next year, and because you know you have support from something greater than you. You can create balance for yourself by remembering to look at the accomplishments, and not just the mistakes, the disappointments, and what remains to be done. Because, don’t forget my friends, the “mistakes” we make along the way to our goals (because we all make missteps) are where the lessons we need to learn will come from…we can’t get there without them. They will shape the path we travel along, just as our hope and vision will.
So, what do you think? Will you give it a try?
Be happy and well in the new year to come,