As we end the year, having mixed emotions is almost a universal experience. We feel joy for all that has been accomplished and the experiences we’ve had. Yet sometimes our minds drift into thoughts about what wasn’t, what may not have happened yet, and small moments where we wish we did something differently. All this combined is why I recommend closing out the year in a mindful way.

Amidst the hustle of the festive season, create quiet moments for reflection. As you can probably guess, I recommend doing this in a journal. Journaling is an opportunity to introspect and understand yourself, your experiences, and make sense of the world around you. Your journal can become a space where thoughts transcend tasks, enabling you to navigate the end of the year with clarity. And truly understand what you want to achieve in the following year.

As the year concludes, take a moment to pause, take time to celebrate your growth, and prepare for a bright new beginning.

One – Reflect on the Past Year

Beyond the usual reflections on achievements and setbacks, the end of year invites you to be introspective on a deeper level. Here, amidst the stillness, allow yourself to revisit the chapters of the past year.  Ask yourself questions and write your answers down in your journal. You’ll find that these reflections offer a more meaningful understanding of your journey. And as you end the year, you’ll set a foundation for genuine growth.

Here’s some questions to get you started:

    • Reflect on the most significant moments of the past year. What were the key events, challenges, and successes you experienced? How have these moments shaped you?
    • How have you evolved this year? Recognize your strengths, your journey, and the wisdom you’ve gained.
    • Acknowledge areas where you felt vulnerable or challenged. What did these moments teach you?
    • What are the most important lessons you’ve learned this year? Consider both personal and professional spheres. How will these lessons influence your decisions and actions in the upcoming year?
    • What did you learn about your resilience this year? How did the challenges you faced enhance your ability to persevere?
    • How have your experiences reshaped your perspective on life and relationships?

Two – Turn to Gratitude to End the Year

List the things you are most grateful for this year. Research shows that ending the year with a heart full of gratitude not only enhances our current well-being but also paves the way for a more fulfilling future.

Grab your journal – and possibly your calendar – and document all the wonderful things that happened to you. Either work your way through the year backwards. Or, look at your January calendar and remind yourself of all the goodness in your life over the past year.

This act of thankfulness allows us to view our experiences through a lens of appreciation, transforming ordinary moments into valuable lessons and cherished memories. By choosing gratitude and making it your lifestyle, we set a foundation of positivity and resilience for the year ahead.

Three – Decide to Let Go

As we close one year and look to the next, it’s the perfect time to practice the art of letting go. of letting go will enable you to cultivate inner peace.

    • Reflect on what no longer serves your growth—be it habits, thoughts, or relationships.
    • Identify any goals or aspirations you had at the beginning of the year that remain unfulfilled. Reflect on why they were not achieved. And decide if you want to continue working on the goal. Or if you’d rather let it go for a goal that’s more suited to who you are today.
    • Make a conscious decision to let go or even make a ritual about it. Like writing down these elements and safely burning the paper, symbolizing the release of their hold over you. This act is both a symbolic and powerful step in clearing the space (physical and mental) for new beginnings.

As you end the year with the decision to let some things go, engage in activities that nourish your soul as a way to let go.

Four – End the Year by Looking Ahead

What is your vision for 2024? As you end the year and begin looking forward to the new year, ask yourself some thoughtful questions.

    •  How can you align your actions, beliefs, and attitudes with this vision?
    • What are your aspirations, goals, and dreams?
    • How do you envision your life evolving and what steps can you take to move closer to that vision?
    • While setting goals for the new year, focus on clarity of intention. What is the why behind your goals? What is your motivation? What drives your actions?
    • How can you align your aspirations with your core values?
    • What can you do to ensure that your efforts are meaningful and fulfilling?

Though I believe working through these – or similar questions – are best done on paper.

Five – Opening Yourself to Change

Finally, approach the new year with openness to change. Change is hard – even when we want our life to be different. Embrace new experiences, be willing to adapt, and find joy in the unexpected. This openness and the mindset shift will inspire you to try new things and become more receptive to life’s infinite possibilities.

It’s about understanding that every experience, whether planned or unplanned, is a valuable part of your personal evolution.

It may be helpful to also do things like meditative walks in nature to get your body moving and your mind wandering. Or simply being fully present amidst the winter stillness. Inner tranquility is a powerful tool for transformation, as it allows you to approach life’s challenges with a calm and centered mind.

As we end the year with some mindfulness, remind yourself this is an excellent use of your time.

Because you’re are both preparing for a new year and setting the stage for a personal renaissance.

Want help ending the year, looking ahead, and choosing a word of the year for 2024?

A Guiding Light for 2024: Discover Your Word of the Year.

Get a free eBookHere’s what you’ll find in A Guiding Light for 2024: Discover Your Word of the Year.
    • In Part One, you’ll take a look back as you Bid Farewell to 2023.
    • You’re invited to look ahead to 2024and begin to breathe life into your desires as you explore Part Two.
    • In Part Three, you’ll review a list of more than 1000 words and begin pondering what Word (or words) is right for YOU in 2024.
    • To help you gain clarity, Part Four provides you with a series of tools to help you gain clarity around the best Word to serve as a touchstone to serve as your companion through your journey in 2024.
    • In Part Five, you’ll Declare Your Word (or Words) of 2024.
I’ve also added two Bonus section to help you you create a more nourishing year.

Bonus One explores Ways to Work with Your Word of the Year. This section suggests a dozen ways to help seal your Word…and more than a dozen journal prompts to continue to check-in with your Word throughout 2024.

Bonus Two is an invitation to dive into your emotions. There, I’ll share how you can use your emotions for good. And as a path and process for creating days that are more nourished. And satisfying.

Get your FREE Copy of this powerful workbook: A Guiding Light for 2024: Discover Your Word of the Year.

>>Want to read more tips on how to love your life? Click here!<<

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