Another year is gone while a new year is upon us and if you are anything like most, you haven’t done much to prepare for it. Most likely, it feels like it came out of nowhere and along with it, a reminder of all the things you wanted to do but didn’t get done in the year that has passed.
Even though it may not feel like it, there are actually ways that you can create an empowering and exciting start to the new year ahead.
The new year holiday is a time for setting a foundation for the year to come. It represents a symbolic or ceremonial space where you can reflect on the year that has passed, cleanse away anything not serving you, and start fresh in a thoughtful and intentional way.
Most of us will sort of sleepwalk through this time of the year. We may randomly pick some resolutions that we feel guilty about and convince ourselves that we are going to make them a priority in the new year. Since we know that most new year resolutions don’t make it past January, we are basically setting ourselves up for failure and starting off the year feeling like shit about ourselves. And then we wonder why we aren’t achieving our goals and living the life we desire, right?
If we instead embrace this time of year as a space for reflection, cleansing, and starting fresh, we set ourselves up to feel good and in turn, to win.
So, what exactly does it mean to reflect, cleanse, and start fresh?
Set aside time to look back over the year in a thoughtful and honest way, considering your own self, the situations you encountered in your life, and the people you chose to spend time with. Take note of what made you feel good, what you are proud of, the things you need to take accountability for, what you disliked, how you grew, etc. Most important though, do not use this as a time to beat yourself up and make yourself feel awful. This is an opportunity for you to own your life in a way that sets you up to making different choices moving forward.
Exercises for reflection:
Do a Year in Review
What went well?
What improvements did I make?
How were my relationships?
What do I wish I would have accomplished?
What do I plan to continue to do?
What do I plan to do differently?
Write Yourself a Letter
Write yourself a letter from a gentle and kind space within yourself stating your intentions for the new year. Keep it close and read it often.
Upon reflecting on the past year, determine what areas in your life are no longer serving you. This may be people who are doing you more harm than good, situations that you need to disengage from, or even physical items that you need to dispose of. Clearing things out of your life allow you to open up space and frees up your energy to focus on and allow for the things in your life that you desire and that serve you.
Exercise for cleansing:
Make a commitment to your SELF – When you understand and commit to making yourself a priority each and every day, you are able to clear out what isn’t serving you. The more you nurture and replenish you, the less tolerance you will have for the things in your life that simply do not feel good.
Say goodbye to the toxic things in your life
Once you have reflected and cleansed, you are in a space to be able to make informed and conscious choices about how you desire to move forward into the year. From this space, you can set goals about who you want to be and what you want to accomplish in the new year.
Exercises for starting fresh:
Set realistic goals- Start with short-term attainable goals that are realistic for you and use them to build your momentum toward obtaining larger goals. If you have a goal of losing 10 pounds, consider that as a larger and long-term goal. Set smaller short-term goals like adding a serving of veggies to your meals or walking 20 minutes/day to build your momentum and success toward achieving that larger goal.
Create an intention board – Most people have heard of a vision board, and this is much the same, but the distinction is an important one. We are active creators in our lives, therefore we must do more than have a vision. We must set clear intentions about how we intend to show up in our world and declare our accountability for making our dreams a reality.
You have an opportunity to make this new year one of joy and success, and it all starts now with the type of foundation you lay out.
Set yourself up to win and make 2018 a year you will love to remember!
With love and joy,
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