Every year offers us our challenges so it can be easy to say, now that it’s almost over, “I’m so done with all that, I’m moving on”. However the challenges we face become opportunities when we allow ourselves to reflect upon them. When experiences are uncomfortable the natural inclination is to turn away or to try to forget them. But in the messy and the muck there is information about our patterns, our tendencies, our triggers, and our cues. So when we allow ourselves those moments of reflection, before moving on to forget, we grow, we learn, and then we can move forward and on.
Here is a practice I find helpful during times when things are ending, the year, a relationship, a stay, a life. Take out a pen and paper (a favorite journal) and write out all of the challenges you faced within the thing that is ending, in my example below I reflected on 2018. Then, take a look at how you can turn any of those challenges into goals/objectives during the next stage or phase in your life. Try not to overthink it and let the words just flow. Pause and take a break if you get stuck. Revisit it after some deep breaths or a short meditation.
Here’s my reflection for 2018 and what I’ll be practicing in 2019:
1. Continuing to listen to my body and it’s wisdom instead of being dissuaded by the noise in my head.
2. Honoring my energy and establishing boundaries (with people, around activities, and commitments) that I vow to uphold.
3. Not getting in my own damn way. I’ll believe in what I have to offer and give those things the opportunity to succeed by publishing, promoting, and putting them out there, so that they can be seen. Stop deciding my ideas will fail before they’ve even had a chance to succeed.
4. Honor what my time costs. Practice communication around financial needs in an effort to become more comfortable upholding and asking for what I’m worth.
5. Continuing to prioritize stillness and choosing restorative practices that are a true fit for me. Noticing when the “shoulds, coulds, and sposdas” are shaping the choices I make and practicing pausing to allow my inner wisdom and self understanding to guide my choices so that I may live my truth.
So thank you to the challenges of 2018, because of you, I’ll only be wiser, more energized, successful, financially stable, and calm in 2019.