5 minute read
As we enter the last week of the year, there is much to reflect upon. The “twenties” have given us a run for our money so far. From a global pandemic and record heat waves to a full-blown war, the beginning of this decade has most of us worried about what our future, especially our children’s, has in store. We feel less in control of our lives than ever before, and it seems to worsen each year.
2022 was rough
Looking back at 2022, we may feel there is little to celebrate other than the year’s end. Honestly, 2023 will not be any better regarding global events and news. The major issue is not only what is happening in the world but where we collectively put our focus. While war, recession and the deterioration of human rights are horrible injustices that need our attention, the good news is often overlooked and under-reported. Did you know that the child mortality rate is lower than it’s ever been in human history? Or that Canada was one of 4 countries that banned conversion therapy in 2022? Let’s remember that social media is like a 24/ news stream. We now know what is happening in every corner of the globe within minutes. No human brain can process all that information; it is beyond stressful. While there seems to be more bad news, it’s just a result of more news overall. There will always be tragedies happening around us, but we must also look to the good to help us renew our faith in humanity. (Read this article for more good news from the past year.)
The Importance of introspection
The outside world and our environment greatly influence our lives, but when we get caught up in this whirlwind, we forget that we play a massive role in how we perceive and react to the world and its events. I am not suggesting that we can ignore the bad stuff and it will all be better. However, we need introspection and reflection in hard times more than ever. It is vital to slow down the pace, turn off the news, take a breath and focus on what is working in our favor and what we can actually do about what isn’t.
With this in mind, grab your journal or a piece of paper and find a quiet (child-free) room to do this year-end review. We might not be able to change the last year, but we can improve our perception of our last twelve months and set intentions for the new one at our door.
Here we go.
5 Things I am Grateful for?
Review the past year and list five things you’re grateful for. From the precious moments you have shared with loved ones to the opportunities that have come your way. It can even be more basic, like being grateful for the food on your plate or the roof over your head. You are alive and have made it through another trip around the sun (while raising small people); you have much to be grateful for, my dear.
A daily gratitude practice has so many benefits. Check out this post for more.
What am I most proud of this year?
I am sure you have accomplished much more than you give yourself credit for. As women, we are often too hard on ourselves and do not bask in the glory of our achievements. But you are here, standing strong and have overcome the hurdles 2022 has thrown your way. So what are your victories from the past twelve months? Big or small, write them down and celebrate your resilience.
What do I want to leave in 2022?
Think about something that pollutes your life and that you want to shed before the new year. It has to be something you have control over. For me, it’s self-doubt, procrastination and body shaming. Those are the things I want to leave in 2022. Write them down and visualize yourself removing them, like an old shirt, as the clock strikes twelve on January 1st. You will have to do the work consistently to make this change in your life, but there is something powerful about that visual of leaving it behind.
Your affirmation for 2023
Words matter, especially the ones we repeat to ourselves. Positive affirmations are powerful; they can help combat stress and improve your overall health. Based on what you would like to leave behind, come up with an affirmation to help you set an intention for the new year. Repeat this affirmation daily. Make it your screen saver or write it down on a post-it. Your affirmation should feel personal to you, but here are a few examples for inspiration.
I am worthy of self-love
I am present because life happens in the moment
I choose love over fear
I am capable of accomplishing my goals
The thing about control
2022 might have you feeling like the world is spinning out of control, leaving us powerless and small. But the thing is, life is never certain. Nothing is ever guaranteed. We too often look outside ourselves to find what is missing or gain a sense of purpose or belonging. We let outside influences dictate our day-to-day, and we fear moving forward. So as we welcome the new year with open arms, let’s collectively step into our power and remember that we hold the reins to our life. We control what we focus on and where we spend our time, so let’s spend it wisely and mindfully.
Happy Holidays Mama, and may you have a gentle new year.