Day 89: New Year’s ritual

Being mindful while preparing and carrying out my New Year’s ritual:

I love my New Year’s ritual.

After having given up on New Year’s resolutions a long time ago, once i realised I was just setting myself up to fail, a dear friend introduced me to the idea of this New Year’s ritual.

And it immediately became my favourite way to spend my New Year’s Eves.

Sometimes I do the ritual with a trusted friend or two. And sometimes I do it alone. Either is absolutely fine.

Between Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve, I grab my notebook and pen, and head to my happy place for a couple of hours.

First I write down a kind of ‘year in review’. Month-by-month, I note any events and occasions, places I’ve been, peopled I’ve seen, lessons I’ve learnt and things I’ve accomplished, struggles I’ve had, and anything else that comes to mind that I feel is important.

Then I write down:

  1. All the things I’m grateful for in 2015 and why. I find this the easy part and thankfully the list is usually long as there’s so much to be grateful for.
  2. All the things I’m happy to let go of, particularly the behaviour, habits and beliefs I’d like to leave behind. This takes more thinking time and much more delving. Usually I like to think about this over a few days and write them down as they come to me.
  3. All the things I’d like to manifest, build on, and create in the new year ahead and how I want to live my life. I make sure these are clear, doable and can be turned into an affirmation starting with ‘I am’. Again this takes a little more time. I try not to go crazy with these as it can become too overwhelming. But as I revisit them on a monthly basis, I tend to adjust or add to if need be.
  4. I also like to think of a main intention for the year and will keep this up on my wall where I can see it every day. Again, I write it as an affirmation. For 2016 my main intention is: I am living from my heart♡

As the sun begins to go down on the last day of the year, I light a candle, burn some essential oil, and put on the soothing sounds of Deva Premal. (When I’m living by the beach, I head down to the shore and shout them into the sea!).

I then read my long list of gratitude out loud, genuinely thanking everything on my list from the bottom of my heart.

Then as the sun is setting, I write each ‘letting go’ on it’s own little piece of paper and burn each one as I speak it aloud. If that’s not possible, I tear each up into tiny pieces.

It feels fantastic to let them go like this, to watch them dissolve into the fire: it’s very gratifying, cathartic and cleansing.

I then meditate for a while.

As the sun comes up on the first day of the new year, again being mindful of speaking from my heart, I read out my list of intentions in the present tense as though they are already happening, already in motion. For example: I am living from my heart ♥︎

And that’s it!

I find this ritual so powerful, that I like to revisit my intentions and repeat this part of the ritual every New Moon. It’s like a check-in to see where I’m at, and to help keep me focused on manifesting the good stuff. Sometimes I find that my intentions have changed throughout the year. And that’s ok.

So with this in mind, my happy for today is being mindful while preparing and carrying out my New Year’s ritual. And I wish everyone a very wonderful and magical 2016.

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