As we turn the page from 2017 to 2018, we begin a new chapter. A chapter that’s crisp and new and completely empty of words and images. A blank chapter full of promise and hope.
But before we take the first step into that the empty pages of the year ahead, we often find it helpful to take time to look back over the marks we’ve made in the year that was 2017. What insights can it share with you?
Find a peaceful spot and allow yourself time to ponder these questions as you bring a close to 2017:
- What have you gained from 2017 that you would like to keep? (a new perspective, a routine, an intention)
- What would you like to release from 2017? (a perspective, a habit, an expectation)
- What did you discover about yourself in 2017?
- What was your biggest challenge? How did it change you?
- What surprised you the most?
- What are you most grateful for?
Let these questions soak over you and uncover what these 12 months have gifted you. Whether 2017 has brought you great joy or been a doozy of a year, our role as we turn the page is not to judge it, but to learn from it.
I often find myself at this time of year reflecting on the degree of control we have over what words are going to be written in the chapter about the year ahead.
I used to live my life like I believed I could control life, right down to the minutiae of detail. I’d set clear goals and push my way towards achieving them, often disappointed that they didn’t work out as I’d quite intended and frequently exhausted and disappointed in the process.
But life unravels in ways that we can never predict, never fully control and never force to look a particular way.
Now I realize I’m a co-creator of my life. And whether you see your co-creating partner as the Universe, God, Buddha, an energetic force or something else, knowing you’re in a partnership can shift everything.
So as I turn the page into a New Year, I now choose to set a word to guide my contribution of the partnership. It offers a constant reference point to bring me back to my truth, a chance to start again when I’m feeling lost.
It feels more real world to me than goals. It seems simpler and more impactful and takes the form of a motivation rather than a hurdle to fail at.
A word that brings me home to what matters most, throughout the year.
I chose spaciousness in 2016 and simplicity in 2017, both deeply transformative for me in ways I could never have anticipated. You can read about 2016 spaciousness: http://michellemccartan.com/2016/11/spaciousness-in-the-real-world/
So how do I decide on a word? Here are some questions to consider;
- How do I want to feel?
- How do I want to live?
- Who do I want to be?
- What do I most want to feature in my life?
- What matters most to me?
- What contribution do I want to have in my life?
Let your word transform and guide you in the year ahead.
Whatever word you choose as the title for 2018, let it be visible.
- Put it somewhere you will see often. For me on a bracelet but others choose to put it on post it notes, on screen savers or in their diary.
- When you come to make decisions, bring it to the fore and let it guide you. And ground you in what matters most.
- Check in every week or month around how things have been unraveling relative to the word, how might it guide you further?
- Share it with other people, there’s a power in declaration.
Have fun discovering the big impact that one small word can have on your life in 2018.