“Another year over… And a new one just begun” ~ John Lennon
John Lennon summed it up so well. Christmas time is rooted in Christianity and tradition, but it also marks the end of a year and the start of a new one just around the corner. A perfect time to reflect on the previous year and look ahead to a vision of 2018.
I like the approach Eileen Chadnick takes in her Globe and Mail article, Take Time to Reflect on the Past Year – and Look Ahead to Your Goals for the New One, where she poses 12 questions on a theme related to the previous year and year ahead.
Using her approach as inspiration, I thought I would pose my own 6 question version below that we can apply to our own life (I asked my family for some thoughts and examples):
“Another year over”
1) What word best describes the year for you?
- Transitions (my word)
2) What were the best parts of the year?
- Our puppy Ashley
- Attending my grandson’s high school graduation (my mom’s)
- Starting a new job
- Moving to our favorite vacation destination
- Playing family games
- Suppertime conversations
3) What were the most challenging parts of the year?
- Starting a new high school in a new city
- Losing a best friend to cancer
- Starting a new job
- Realizing the fragility of life
- Moving away from friends
- Starting university
- Retreading my career
“A new one just begun”
4) What is my one big goal for 2018?
Goal-setting is a huge topic but one common theme is making goals SMART – Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timely. Our goals can be varied such as personal, professional, spiritual, social, or any combination thereof. Sometimes we put too much pressure on ourselves when it comes to a new year and create too many goals or ones that are too vague.
I am going to put some real thought into this one…
5) What do I want my mantra to be for 2018 (one word, sentence, phrase or concept)?
- I will not ‘should’ on myself today
- Try new things
- One day at a time
- Tomorrow is a new day
- It is okay to have a sad day
- Be kind to me
I looked back on my phone to see what January 1, 2017 looked like. I had left a picture of this excerpt for myself:
“Be Kind to Yourself – sometimes it’s easier to feel compassionate for another than for yourself. But true compassion doesn’t discriminate. The next time you’re having a difficult moment, see if you can offer yourself some kindness. You might be surprised at how much it helps – and helps you to feel kinder toward others.”
When I reflect upon the past year, I did try to practice more self-compassion. We moved from Alberta to British Columbia, and although it was a much anticipated, planned and desired move, it has still been a huge transition. When things have seemed hard, I have found it very helpful to be more kind and compassionate to myself, just as I would extend towards someone else.
This year, I think I will do the same and leave myself another ‘guiding mantra’ message on my phone. I think I already know what it will be… I urge you to do the same.
Next Sunday’s post will be a recap of the final pillar of the year of the Best You – “Be You”. Since it will be December 31st, I will share my mantra with you as well.
Happy Holidays to you and yours. Wishing you a peaceful holiday season with much gratitude for your support.