Less than a month is left for 2021 to end. While this year has not been quite as much of a roller coaster as 2020, there’s still a lot to look back on. Whether you have enjoyed a relatively stable year or you have spent it working hard to regain some sense of normalcy, there have undoubtedly been significant highs and lows for you. As you approach the end of this year, you may be wondering how to incorporate the lessons learned this year into the next. If you’re finding yourself in this boat, try using mindfulness to review your year:
Take Into Account Your Greatest Joys
When reviewing your entire year, your mindfulness practice will look a bit different than it typically does. Begin by sitting down for your mindfulness time, but instead of noticing how you’re feeling at the current moment, think about your entire year up until this point. As you think back about the year’s events, start by noticing the things that have given you contentment and brought you joy. When have you felt like you were at your best? When did you feel ‘in the groove?’ What types of activities made you feel like you were at the top of your game?
Observe Your Low Points
Now that you’ve thought about the areas of your life that were great this year, flip your thoughts around and think back on the year again. This time, notice what events, people, or times were low points for you. This can include assignments at work that were a slog, people, who majorly drained you, or any kind of circumstance that left you feeling worse. For other people, maybe a weekend packed with socializing is their ideal schedule. For you, however, a busy weekend may leave you feeling like you need a vacation. Taking notice of the parts of your year that were not so positive will give you the information you need to step into next year and plan better to optimize your energy.
Take Stock of Your Feelings About Next Year
Once you have taken the time to think about the best things and the worst things from the past year, turn your thoughts to the year ahead of you. Notice your apprehensions and concerns that come up related to the next year. It’s also worthwhile to observe what you’re excited about when you think of the upcoming year as well. As you take the opportunity to think about the year ahead of you, you can also use your discoveries about the things you’ve enjoyed over the past year and the things that have drained you over the past year to inform your goals. Once you know more about what makes you ‘tick,’ you can use that to make next year great.
Mindfulness is all about practice. You might need some time to gather all your thoughts together but it’s worth it. Start your new year with positive vibes and good lessons to endure the trying times and enjoy the highs of your life.