I love this time of year. It's a wonderful opportunity to slow down, reflect, process, dream and plan.
According to Socrates, the unexamined life is not worth living. Whilst that sounds pretty dramatic, the fact is that the first step in creating a healthier, happier life is to take stock and acknowledge where we are right now. This gives us the opportunity to celebrate and reinforce the things that are working for us, and to identify the things we need to change. And right now, as the year draws to a close, is the perfect time of year to do this.
Each new year is a wonderful opportunity to make a fresh start; to discard old habits, make positive changes and steer our lives in the directions of our dreams!
But before we do, it is incredibly helpful to reflect on the past year, celebrate the victories and sweet moments, make peace with the challenges, acknowledge what we've learned and take a few moments to consider what we could have done better.
So here is a list of questions to reflect upon as this year draws to a close:
What made me smile this year?
What am I proud of this year?
What didn't turn out the way I expected?
What did I learn this year?
What brought me joy this year?
What energised and exhilarated me this year?
What memories will I cherish from this year?
What did I learn this year?
What did I give this year?
What could I have done better?
What am I happy to leave behind?
Did I take appropriate care of my physical health this year?
Did I take appropriate care of my emotional health and wellbeing?
Did I indulge in any bad habits this year?
How did I spend my time this year?
Did I use my time well?
What did I procrastinate over?
What did I put off this year?
Who did I spend my time with this year?
Who supported, lifted and cheered me on this year?
Who left me feeling drained or demoralised this year?
Who brought harmony into my life?
Who brought conflict or chaos into my life?
What am I most grateful for?
If I had to sum up this year in one word, image or song, what would that be?
Don't let this list overwhelm you. Feel free to pick the two or three questions that resoate most with you, and reflect on them if you prefer!
Remember, the first step in making changes is taking stock of where we are now! So if this year hasn't lived up to your hopes and expectations, contemplating these questions will give you a head start in making next year your best year yet!
2017 has been a HUGE year. I'm ready to release the tough stuff, savour the sweet moments and give thanks that I have so, so, SO much to be grateful for.
"At the start of a New Year, I'm always humbled
at the huge gift a year represents.
In 52 weeks, you can re-invent yourself.
You can learn a language, start a business,
transform a family, make (or squander) a fortune!
Twelve months is an enormous opportunity!
Who will you be next December?”
~ Philip Humbert