Not Your Usual Year End Reflections
Ah, good ol’ end of year feelings. The supermarket shelves are beginning to fill with puddings as quickly as your calendar for December is filling up with party plans. Stores have their trees up and magazines have their centre spread on this year’s must-have ham… and we’ve got a list of things we said we’d do at the beginning of 2018. All our plans and adventures staring right back at us. Isn’t it just ‘the most wonderful time of the year’?
Sarcasm and panic aside, the year end is a great time for reflection and we’d like you to try two new forms of reflection this year. These two new ideas have one thing in common: no judgement. So put away your pre-written resolutions, tuck them somewhere you’d forget and let’s get started at creating the 2018 we’d actually be proud of.
REFLECTION #1: What I wish I would’ve done
This isn’t about going to the gym an extra three times a week or reading 10 new books. Think about what you wish you would have done this year for yourself.
Is there a call you need to make, an apology that needs to be said or heart-to-heart that needs to happen? Do you need to practice more self-compassion, take time off work, walk away from a toxic relationship, maybe start your own business?
Think about what you’d truly regret if you didn’t have tomorrow (whoa, things just took a dark turn)… but sometimes, we have to go there - to the scary places that help us reconsider where we are in our lives and what’s that truly important change that needs to happen.
Do: write down three meaningful things you’d like to accomplish in the next two months and why they are important to you. Put this list somewhere you’d see every day - on your fridge, mirror, door - and try taking small steps that will move you in the direction to make it happen.
For example, if there’s a difficult call you need to make, start by writing what you’d say. Practice this, feel comfortable saying the things you need to say. Give yourself space and time.
REFLECTION #2: The Reverse Bucket List
This is your real-life highlight reel, your nostalgia playlist with a collection of your greatest moments and memories. All you need to do is write down accomplishments from the past year or so that has left you feeling pretty damn proud of yourself.
What good does this do? Well, my friend, let me tell you a little something about the power of gratitude and how it enhances a person’s overall wellbeing. A 2015 study published in The Journal of Positive Psychology showed that participants who routinely recalled positive experiences had an increase in their subjective wellbeing. Participants were asked to recall three good things from the past 48 hours and to write them down briefly, every day for a week. These experiences in “grateful recounting” resulted in the participants having an easier time accessing positive memories as a result, consistently recalling these memories, sparked an improved wellbeing.
Do: Make a list of every.single.thing that has felt like an accomplishment to YOU or what has happened for you that you are grateful for. It doesn’t always have to be the big stuff. You are not going by anyone else’s standards. This is only for you.
Your list could include a work accomplishment, a new friendship made (lord knows adult friendships are almost impossible), travelling alone, going to an event where you didn’t know anyone - these are things that are worth writing down. You deserve to see how hard you’ve tried despite all your fears.
The year is yours
We’re sure you can think of what you’d like to add to both of the reflections lists above so we might just leave you to it. We’re always here if you need the help and support to create the life, the moments, the relationships and the year you want.
Now, get reflecting and make the rest of 2018 everything you want and need it to be. Make this YOUR most wonderful time of the year.
Want to take this reflecting a little further? This jam-packed four week course will help you work out what you want, how to get there and keep you accountable for putting the fire back into your life. Realign with your purpose, think deep about your values and start living a life you truly love. We can’t think of a better gift to give yourself this Christmas.