Clinking champagne glasses, sparking confetti, shiny balloons, spectacular firework displays bursting in the sky, music, laughter and cheer are all common associations with New Year’s Eve celebrations. It enhances the palpable sense of magic that fills the air as a significant celestial shift occurs in the skies.
It turns out that there are several ancient civilizations that existed many millennia ago who also observed the New Year with their own unique festivals and customs. Ancient Egyptians, for instance, celebrated it in a big way because the New Year coincided with the annual flood of the Nile River.
The flooding of the Nile was considered auspicious by the Egyptians because its waters were the primary source of sustenance for the crops that fed their people throughout the year. The New Year came to be known as a time of renewal and was commemorated with rituals, religious rites and even a bit of partying that involved music, revelry and copious amounts of Egyptian beer!
Just like the Nile River, the New Year floods into our lives to wash away remnants from the past year and nourish us with new possibilities for the next year. Just like those ancient farmers in Egypt, we are bestowed with fertile grounds to harvest new dreams or take on a fresh approach towards old ones.
Every year, the Universe unfailingly promises us an opportunity to rectify any shortcomings and to progress in all facets of our lives so that we can continue to grow and evolve in our journey. We get another chance to recalibrate ourselves so that we can move closer towards our hopes and dreams.
Yet many studies have shown that although most people start off the year feeling charged up about what they plan to accomplish in the upcoming year, their efforts to act on these goals gradually declines within the first couple of months. As the excitement of the New Year wears off, they revert to old ways of thinking and behaving, which derails all their attempts to reach their new goals.
Eventually the practice of setting New Year’s resolutions got a bad rap because many people render it to be ineffective and short-lived – but this could not be further from the truth. I believe that the New Year is one of the best times of the year to set ourselves up for a significant growth spurt.
If we play our cards right, we’ll be able to tap into the energy field that is abounding with potential and our enthusiasm for a fresh start. If we are mindful and strategic enough, we can use New Years as a launching pad for projects and dreams that we have been incubating over the past months or years.
I’m going to share some of my personal rituals that I follow to process and prepare me for a new year. These techniques will not only help you get ready for the year ahead but it will allow you to squeeze all the goodness and the lessons from the previous year that you may have missed out on.
This birds-eye perspective on your life will furnish you with the necessary knowledge and objectivity to make sound decisions about how you would like to move forward in the new era of your life. Here are five simple steps that you can take to ensure that the following year will be both fruitful and fulfilling:
- Review the previous year: In preparation for the forthcoming year, the first step is to reflect on the year that has passed. Review the main highlights of the year by looking through photos or any memorabilia that you have collected over the past few months. This activity will encapsulate all the wonderful memories that you’ve had during the year. You could also make a list of all the wins, challenges and lessons that you experienced. Ask yourself these questions: How did you grow as a person (both internally and externally) as a result of those experiences? Which achievements are you most proud of? What were the lessons and challenges? What can you do better next year?
- Look at the Big Picture of your life: It’s so easy to be caught up in the minutiae of daily living and forget how it all ties up with the big picture of your life. This makes it imperative for us to look at our lives at the macro level by clarifying our mission, vision and values, and verifying if the current path that we are following is in line with our True North. One of the best ways, in my opinion, to stay connected to our vision is by creating a vision board. A vision board is a collage of images that can instantly remind you of everything that you would like to manifest in your future. I think it’s one of the most potent manifestation tools that can excite us about what we’re working towards on a daily basis.
- Create your resolutions and build a game plan: The first two steps of this process are meant to give you a strong foundation to make informed decisions about how you would like to proceed in the next year. Based on a combination of your evaluation of the previous year and your Big Picture perspective, you will be capable of writing well-thought-out resolutions. You can either categorize your new goals based on different areas of your life (family, friends, love, money, career, health, etc.) or you can create generic goals. You can write them down in a journal or use web-based software to set and track them.
- Create systems, structure and rituals: Creating resolutions is like finding your aim, and taking action is like pulling the trigger. It is essential to set aside dedicated time for taking any necessary action towards achieving your goals on a daily basis. Realizing your resolutions is not something that will magically happen by just dreaming about it. It will require deliberate and consistent efforts that’ll eventually yield the results that you desire. For example, if one of your goals is to lose 10 pounds, you would need to commit to taking certain steps on a regular basis, such as visiting the grocery store to buy fresh and healthy foods twice a week, or spending 30-40 minutes jogging outside every day. For more support on achieving your goals, I suggest downloading my free E-book by signing up below this post.
- Stay motivated: There is a possibility that your enthusiasm for achieving your resolutions might dwindle as a couple of months roll by, especially if you aren’t seeing immediate results from your efforts yet. It’s during times like these when you’ll require a boost of inspiration to keep the momentum going. There are a variety of ways that you can stay motivated, such as speaking with friends or a coach who can give you support and hold you accountable, acknowledging and rewarding yourself for the progress that you have made so far, listening to motivational music, repeating affirmations while visualizing your goals, or simply glancing at your vision board.
The New Year represents the next chapter of your life. Get ready to turn the pages over and witness all the wonderful potential and opportunities that await you in this new chapter. Believe that you have everything within you to make it magnificent. Grab your pen and continue writing the riveting story of your life – a story that has the power to enlighten and inspire others.
All my best on your journey,
Did you like this post? Sign up below and I’ll send you more awesome posts like this one every week.