As we round the corner toward the end of the year, I always get requests from clients as to whether I’ve got any exercises I recommend, or rituals I like, to mark what’s gone well in the past year and what’s been, shall we say, challenging. It’s a great question, because there’s no doubt that this is the perfect time of year for contemplating how to build on our successes in the new year, while resolving and clearing out what’s no longer working.
Here’s an exercise I suggest to clients that helps to set the stage for a great upcoming year, while also acknowledging your victories over the past twelve months.
1) Make a list of what you’re proud of in 2014. Include all accomplishments, however small, all successes at work and in life, and all aspects of who you are that have engendered pride. This is a phenomenal way to mark what’s going well.
When you’re done, at the bottom of this list, write a statement of gratitude. Something along the lines of “I am thankful for all that I was able to have, be and achieve over the past year” works nicely.
2) Make a list of everything you’re still working on. Note: this is not an opportunity to beat yourself up! We all face challenges, and part of life is to build upon those challenges for our betterment. Consider each challenge as a learning experience.
Then, if possible, write a statement next to each challenge that starts with “The lesson this challenge is here to teach me is: ______.” Try to frame your challenges in terms of what they are here to teach you.
And when you’re done, at the bottom of this list, write a statement of gratitude– again. (Yes, you read that right.) I like to say that from our greatest challenges come our greatest life lessons. Try that one on for size.
3) Make a list of everything you want to release from 2014. This can be an attitude, a problem at home, even a job or a relationship.
When you’re done with this list– you guessed it– end with a statement of gratitude. And then (and this is key), burn this list. This is a way of committing to the release of everything that no longer serves you.
4) Finally, make a list of everything you want to welcome in for the New Year. This can be a new outlook on life, a new home, a new job or the ideal relationship– anything you choose. Make sure to put it in positive terms.
When you’re done with this list, write another statement of gratitude– this time for all that the Universe is offering you in the coming year. Then, put this list somewhere sacred to you. Truly, it can be anywhere that has meaning, but put it somewhere of significance.
And then set out to make 2015 your best year ever!
And speaking of in with the new, I wanted to make a brief announcement about some changes that are coming to www.emclaughlin.com.
As you know, I’ve recently launched a new endeavor on behalf of primary breadwinner women known as 40 Percent and Rising, which you can read all about right here. We’ve gotten a huge amount of press coverage so far, including an interview just yesterday on Huffington Post Live, and a lot of interest from those we serve. While I’ve got a tremendous team working for me over at 40 Percent and Rising, there’s a lot of work still to be done as we build that organization into a global powerhouse for working women.
As a result, starting with this holiday season, I’ll be scaling back my blogging here at emclaughlin.com to a few times a month, rather than every week, in order to allow for growth in other areas. But not to worry– I’ll still be coming to you regularly with inspiring and informative content to propel you forward in your career and life! And of course, I’ll still be coaching high-performing executives around the world as much as my schedule will accommodate. If you’re interested in getting on board for private coaching in the new year, just reach out right here.
Thank you so much for your continued support and readership. Wishing you and all your loved ones a wonderful holiday season. I’ll see you in 2015!
All the best,