During the Winter Solstice, people in the Northern Hemisphere have long celebrated the return of longer daylight hours and warmth to their part of the planet. Here are some simple things you can do during this season to prepare yourself for the New Year.
1. Give thanks
It’s tempting to be bitter or resentful if things haven’t gone as well as you expected. And the last couple of years have been a big challenge for many. Whatever your situation or circumstance, you have things for which you can be grateful. Make a conscious effort to express gratitude throughout the day, every day. Perhaps consider holding a regular ritual for your family or yourself to remember all the good life has to offer (not just on Thanksgiving).
2. Put things in perspective
Remember that we live on a tiny planet in an enormous universe and view your life from that perspective. People often get caught up in the machinations of their daily lives: the emergencies, celebrations, routine duties, routine and not-so-routine upsets, firedrills and seeming miracles.
Think about how your daily actions are creating a future for yourself and the rest of Earth’s inhabitants.
Remember the past. Think about your ancestors whose lives paved the way for yours.
I stumbled across this quote by Doug Lennick in my Twitter stream today, “Life challenges us to make our path perfect, not to find the perfect path”.
Do what you can daily to make your path perfect and smooth the paths for others.
3. Share your wealth
Giving to others opens the door for more good to come to you. You’ve heard the phrase, “The more you give, the more you receive”. Give what you can, whether it’s a quarter or dollar in the Salvation Army donation basket or a hundred or more. Give some and then give some more. Tithe to people or organizations that inspire you. Send things overseas. People in developing nations would treasure the stuff we throw away.
4. Clean your space & life
Clutter traps your energy and keeps you constrained. Give away items you’ve been holding on to ‘just in case’ for more than a few years. Unless they’re very valuable and irreplaceable, get rid of them. Toss unnecessary files, recycle or shred paper documents you no longer need. Give things to charity. Place items in resale or consignment shops.
To support you in this particular tactic, join other like-minded people in a “Release and Renew Day”. On Wednesday, December 29 I’m hosting an ‘all-day’ (not really; just 3 short calls interspersed throughout the day) virtual event designed to inspire, motivate and encourage your efforts. Get the details here and join us.
5. Set intentions
Finally, once you’ve cleared your space, allow yourself to dream big for the next phase of your life. Be clear. Be specific. Be visceral. Claim your future. Know that it’s yours.
These 5 ideas will help brighten your days even further and launch you powerfully into the New Year.