Usually around this time of year as December rolls around, I start the process of reflecting on all that’s happened in the past year.
But this time when I opened a blank word document to start typing, I stopped and thought to myself, “What exactly did happen for me this year? It feels like such a blur.”
This is where having tools and exercises helped me to get started, that I’ll now share with you if you’d like to do your own process.
First, get a pen and piece of paper, or open a word processing document, and have your calendar handy.
We’re going to jog your memory a bit here.
Next, write down the different category headings for your major life areas so you can make sure that you cover the key bases.
And then have space underneath each heading so you can capture the different things that happened for you that you start to remember.
Here are some categories of major life areas that you can use, and you can add more to tailor to your life:
As you start to recollect this past year, if you have anything that comes up immediately that you remember, go ahead and start putting the accomplishments and experiences in the appropriate categories.
Now open your calendar to the first month of January and start looking at what you did.
How did you spend your time? Did you have any major events or activities? Did you set up a regular habit or routine?
As you look through your calendar, capture anything you want to remember and write it down in your different categories.
If you don’t have a detailed calendar, you can also look through your social media starting in January to see what you posted.
Then go on to February, March, and so on all the way until you reach today.
After I did this exercise, I was quite surprised at all the things that happened this year!
Do you mind if I share some of my 2021 highlights with you?
Of course, I imagine you’re saying yes right now so here they are.
Joselito’s 2021 Highlights
There’s a whole lot more that I can add to this list.
What are your 2021 highlights?
If you have a moment, even just 10-15 minutes, I encourage you to take some time to do this.
The point of this exercise is to take a moment to stop, breathe and smell the roses.
A client told me today that she didn’t know how it was December already, and that the whole year seemed like a blur.
That’s why taking the time to reflect is so important, because it’s so easy to move on to the next, and the next, and the next.
When I used to do open water swimming for my triathlon training in the San Francisco Bay, I couldn’t just keep my head down in the water when I swam. If I did, all I’d be looking at was murky water!
Every once in a while, I had to lift my head up to see if I was swimming in the right direction.
That’s the same concept with reflection.
Reflection helps to give you insights, to raise your head above the water and outside of the day to day activity, and those insights help to guide your next steps.
Not only are you stopping to smell the roses, but you get to ask yourself whether you like the smell of these particular roses in the first place.
Do you want to continue smelling these kinds of roses next year?
Or are there other roses, or flowers, or trees, that you’d like to plant and grow in your garden?
What do you want to remember about 2021?
And what do you want to plant for 2022?
Here’s the joy of it all. It’s your garden. You get to choose.
Abundant Blessings and Namaste.
p.s. If you’d like guided support in reflecting on this past year and what’s possible for next year, I’m leading a virtual mini-retreat on Saturday December 11, 2021, called “Reflecting on 2021, Planting Seeds for 2022.” Click here for more info:
Joselito is a spiritual life coach helping people create a purposeful, spiritual path to career and financial freedom.
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