The end of the year is a natural time for reflection. And depending what frame of mind you’re in, the changing year can either feel great-or miserable. Are you counting your blessings or counting your hard luck stories?
Before you even think about what New Year’s resolutions you’d like to make, it’s important to be in acceptance of where you are right now. If you look in the dictionary, you will find that to “resolve” something means to break it up into parts and analyze it. A “resolution” takes it further by then making a decision or determination for the future. So if you want to make a quality plan for next year, don’t just carry over your unresolved issues from this year! Give yourself a fresh start with this mood-lifting exercise to wrap up the passing year and get yourself in present time.
Step 1: List Your Accomplishments
One of the most common laments that I hear from business owners is “I didn’t accomplish what I wanted to year.” There can be many different issues underneath this one, but an easy place to start is with a “reality check.” Get out a piece of paper and write down all the things you DID accomplish. If you’re really stuck and can’t remember, then get out your date book. Be sure to inventory ALL the things you accomplished, including business & personal activities, whether you completed them in whole or in part. Also, it doesn’t matter whether you are satisfied with the results are not-the key is to dispel the belief that you didn’t get anything done by a preponderance of evidence to the contrary.
Step 2: Acknowledge Yourself
If you’ve been down on yourself, counting accomplishments is great way to start looking at the positive . But what about your inner life? It’s not just about what you DO but who you ARE that matters. What personal traits can you acknowledge yourself for? Deepen the meaningfulness of your written list by including some of the challenges you faced and what personal qualities you developed within yourself. For example, did you show compassion in a time of conflict? Where you acting honorably by keeping a commitment to yourself or someone else? Maybe you experienced a tragedy, but developed a certain strength as a result. To me, it’s the personal feats of courage, beauty, and integrity that are the REAL accomplishments of life. By acknowledging yourself in this way, you begin to build genuine self- esteem and get to know what the “real you” is all about.
Step 3: Count Your Blessings
After you list your accomplishments, both inner and outer, you’ll naturally feel more optimistic. It’s the glass half-full perspective. So let’s fill it all the way up! Ask yourself the question, “What am I grateful for?” Most people start out by listing the big things that they usually take for granted, such as a place to live and so on. But to get the most out of this exercise, I want you to look for the small and sometimes subtle things. Did someone say something nice to you on a day when you really needed it? Did a situation turn around for the better for you or for someone you love? On any given day, countless small blessings occur that make your life better. Gratitude is consciously receiving them with joy. So soak them up and let that joy shine from within!
Jaya Savannah - Chief Inspiration Officer. Strategy Coach for Holistic Businesses. Trainer, speaker, and writer. Spiritually aware, yet street smart. Elephant lover.