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January first

Nobody ever saw January first with indifference.

For those of us in the world of “time,” measured by months, weeks, and days, there is something very encouraging about a new calendar. The fresh, clean pages inspire a bit of hope for a new year filled with wonder. We tear up, burn, or file last year’s calendar as if to close the book on it. Then we open the untouched, unspoiled new diary where even the paper smells hopeful.

I have cultivated a year-end habit of asking myself three questions each December 31st. The answers help me to relive joyful moments, re-evaluate painful ones, and especially to think forward. Perhaps you’d like to try the practice?

Where have you been?

The question is intended to examine one’s own behavior looking back over the past year. Not to dwell in the past, but to learn from it.

It gives me great joy to think of all I have seen and done. While my achievements bring me happiness, my mistakes are just as valuable. Each event has provided me with a choice about who I am and who I choose to become.

In every moment, you have the ability to choose who you are going to be. Where have you been? What events from this past year have helped shaped your thinking? How have you grown? What has changed - in you - this year?

Where are you now?

It is valuable to understand life as it exists today, in this moment, right now. And right now. And right now…

We so often dwell in the past or spend time longing for a future. Sometimes we miss the present moment altogether. Who or what is in your life today? What joy can you find? What type of experiences are your creating - for yourself and those around you? Who are you choosing to be?

Where are you going?

The year ahead is full of possibility. We prepare the best we can for the inevitable challenges ahead. In the face of those challenges - both planned and unplanned - we choose the path to become our most extraordinary selves.

As you look ahead, what events are already planned? Why have you chosen to put these in your calendar? What would you like to see happen in the new year? How will your relationships evolve? What is the goal behind the goal?

Life is not always full of rainbows and unicorns. In the tougher moments, working with a Coach helps you to move ahead with your own chosen purpose.

For me, I continue the journey of learning and adventure. My chosen theme for this year is that it truly be a new year, full of new and wondrous experiences.

As a small child learns for the first time that birds can fly, that frogs can jump, that they themselves can sing and laugh and cry. At what age do we start taking these things for granted? I will strive to appreciate it all over again. To see the tall trees overhead and know they are strongly rooted underground. To cry when I’m sad and know that feeling grief is part of being human. Then use that grief to create a new, wiser version of myself. To laugh and sing. To chose a life I love.

What about you?

To work one-to-one with Coach Eileen, sign up for an introductory session.

To attend one of our "Creating 2021" workshops in January, register here.

Originally published Dec 2018.

Updated and republished Dec 2020.