I have done a lot of reflecting before and during the holidays about how I felt about 2015 and what my hopes are for 2016. I wanted to 'mark' this time as one of leaving the past of 2015 behind and being open to what emerges in 2016. One friend suggested I have a party and burn the 2015 calendar - after all, it was the year of cancer. However, as I thought about that, I didn't really feel like that action was aligned with how I felt. Ironically, I don't want to 'trade' or forget 2015. While there were lots of challenges, it has been a year where I have felt such support from family, friends and colleagues - support I may never have known otherwise. I have also learned that I can face tough news and not fall completely to pieces (most of the time :-). I have mostly learned that we don't know what the future holds and so each moment becomes a little more precious.
At our cottage this past weekend, I brought some image cards I have used at work and everyone chose a card that represented 2015 and one that linked to their hopes for 2016. It was quite powerful to hear our family and extended family articulate both the challenges and the blessings of this past year along with future hopes.
Yesterday I was reminded in an email of some work that I have done with my coaches over the years, based on the work of Jinny Ditzler called your Best Year Yet. She has authored a book, and has a website. A couple of years ago I worked through an exercise based on Jinny's work in January with my coach, answering some challenging questions about what worked well, what the challenges had been and what I was aspiring to for the coming year.
Some of those questions included:
What are your greatest accomplishments of the year?
What were your greatest disappointments?
What were your most important learnings?
What will be your most important roles in the year ahead?
I would add (in this time of need around us) -
How are you going to contribute to the lives of others in 2016?
Taking time in the coming days to reflect both backwards and forwards, and sharing some of those thoughts with those we love or colleagues we work with, will allow us all to be very intentional about 2016. We have been given another day, another month, another year in which to thrive and become more fully who we were designed to be... Happy New Year!!