When I sit down for a quiet moment, I’m overwhelmed that it’s already December. 2022 is weeks away, we’ve lived through another year of a global pandemic, and the movie, “Love Actually,” blessed our movie theaters 18 years ago.
Time seems to be flying by at rapid speeds. Regardless of what your individual experience has been this year, each of us has encountered and dealt with so much, so much that we’ve never experienced before. When media outlets remind us that we’re living through times that are unprecedented, never known before, they are not wrong.
With all this unknown, how do you close out a year and begin to plan for the next? Goals seem futile, but they are more important than ever. Hope and purpose shed light during darkness and striving towards goals gives us that. Oftentimes people forget a part of goal setting that is just as important as the goals themselves: recapping for yourself the previous year.
Knowing where you’re coming from sets the course towards your north star for the upcoming year. One of the best practices to close out a year, in addition to champagne toasts and a countdown, is to set aside time to look back and assess. We tend to move through life quickly checking off our to-do lists, but we often forget to stop and pat ourselves on the back.
As this year comes to a close, I’d like to suggest a new tradition. One where you set aside an hour or two, light a candle, pour tea or wine, and look back at all you’ve done, accomplished, didn’t get to, wished you’d done, big milestones, small but monumental shifts, etc.
Some questions to ask yourself during this: What brought me joy? What did I think was going to be impossible, but once I started it was actually simpler and more fun than I anticipated? Where did I feel frustration? Who made me feel supported and how did they do that? Who did I support? Where and how did I grow as a human? What made me feel loved? How did I step out of my comfort zone? Where did I shine my brightest and why?
By giving yourself this nurturing moment before diving into a new year, you tune yourself to appreciation and gratitude, love is actually all around. You‘ll realize how much you’ve accomplished, learned and grown. Be kind to yourself, cheer yourself on and let yourself honestly assess. Acknowledge yourself and all you’ve gone through without conditions. Then after you’ve celebrated you, leap forward into all that 2022 has to offer.
Let me know if anything surprises you by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Until then, cheers to you!