Releasing The Past, Embracing The Future
For many of us, 2015 presented beautiful and enriching experiences, but it also cracked us open and gave us plenty of challenges. Does this sound about right to you? I’m not an astrologer but it makes me think that there must have been something up with the stars this past year that made so many challenging and character testing scenarios for so many kind hearted, loving people. If any astrologers read this, feel free to weigh in on that last statement!
If you felt like many of us, 2015 was filled with new exciting opportunities and experiences that you might not have expected, but it likely also saw you through some really deep, sad, foundation-cracking times. It’s ok. You are already healing. Maybe you feel like you’ve completely bounced back already, if so, excellent! If not, hang in there.
My favourite part of a new year is reflecting on the past year, and giving myself a chance to acknowledge what I went through, good and bad. To embrace and be grateful for the good, and to release the not so good from my heart and from my mind.
Today I’ve been writing down several of the excellent things that happened; I took up salsa dancing, I’ve developed new friendships with some amazing people, I strengthened friendships with some old friends, I reconnected with my yoga family, I committed myself to connecting with more clients and supporting more people to live fully. Following my own advice, I jetted off to Mexico on an intuitive whim, I let myself trust and be vulnerable and opened up my heart again. All things I am extremely grateful for.
I’ve also reflected on some of the crappy feeling things that happened, shall we call them the ‘lessons’; I discovered a few limitations stemming from a 2 year old concussion that I’ve had to work around, I was challenged with a lower back issue and even managed to subject my newly opened heart to some serious and very deep pain. But you know what? All of these ‘bad’ things that happened, brought incredible lessons with them. I’ve learned how to navigate mental fogginess, fatigue, and a complete lack of focus- due to the concussion- and still live my life while running a business that I love. My back pain has slowly started disappearing thanks to my new found love of salsa. Who knew that wearing salsa shoes and shakin’ what your mama gave you could heal chronic back pain? And my heart, well, I’m still working on that but what I have come to realize is that I deeply and truly love and respect myself, and so I know that whatever challenge life presents, I will move through it. I release all the pain with grace and ease.
With the coming of this new year, I consciously acknowledge all of the challenges this past year presented, and it’s now time to let them go.
Get out a sheet of paper. Set a timer for 5 minutes and write down all of the good things that happened in 2015. Things big and small. Ready? GO!
Now that you’ve written down all of the good things, take out a second sheet of paper. Set a timer for 3 minutes and write down all of the crappy things that happened. Annnnd GO!
Ok. So here’s the deal. Let’s work with the crappy stuff first. Look over the things listed on that second sheet of paper. Notice if any of them seem like they have lessons attached to them. Things that you learned from them. Can you find a bit of gratitude for the lesson? You might not see or feel the lesson yet, and that’s ok. Once you’ve looked over all of them, close your eyes, send out some gratitude for the lessons that you did learn. With your eyes still closed, take a deep breath as if to breathe in the energy of those lessons, so that they remain. Then consciously release all of the negative experiences. Let them go. Let them drain out of you with your out breath. You don’t need them anymore. You’ve got the lesson. Let the pain go. Release it with grace, and maybe even a smile.
Ok, on to the positive bits of 2015!
Look them over, using the same technique, notice if there are any lessons within the things on your list. Make a note of the lessons. As you read over your list of amazingness, let yourself bask in the energy of it all. Let yourself relive those moments and experiences. Soak them up. Own them. They are yours to keep. How delightful!
Pick the top 3-5 experiences or memories that you can’t help but smile about, and write down one thing that made each of those experiences so enjoyable. Now take those 3-5 things and look ahead. How can you infuse your life with those 3-5 things more frequently? How can you carry this beautiful, expansive energy with you? If you are making goals for 2016, use these key feel-good things to help guide your goal setting. You get to decide how you spend the next year of your life.
Above all, as 2015 draws to a close, let us release it with a kiss of gratitude as we collectively exhale. May 2016 be the best year of your life thus far.
I wish you all the things you dream of, and above all, I wish you love.
I’d love to hear from you! Did you find this exercise helpful? Did anything come up that you weren’t expecting?