There’s no better way to kick off the New Year than with champagne toasts, great friends, and a grateful heart. I have a ritual I’ve been doing for several years now to indent gratefulness into the new year. The ﬁrst week of January, I ﬁnd a peaceful spot I can disappear to for an hour or so, cozy by the ﬁreplace, overlooking an ocean, or heck, I’ll even hide in the closet, anywhere with peace and quiet. I take some time to write out the tiny inﬂuential memories to the big-mega-colossal moments in my life from the previous year. Yes, I even include the ones I may want to forget because even those lead to growth. Growth is always trail-blazed by challenge and change, and I’m sure no matter who you are, 2020 has brought you an ample dose or two!!
Put It On Paper
I like to go old school. Instead of a computer, I prefer handwriting in a journal, but you do you and use whatever ﬂoats your boat. The key is to put it to paper, even if that’s the electronic version. Writing down these moments allows for reﬂection and acknowledgment. When you look at your life on a day to day basis, sometimes it’s hard to recognize how far you’ve come and what you’ve overcome. Yet, reﬂecting over a year can bring a new perspective. I’ve realized if I don’t take this time to remember, it’s easy to overlook many incredible moments. Write them all down, anything that pops into your mind, from the mini ones that led to impactful victories to the epoch-making accomplishments you couldn’t wait to write home about! Even including those that were just between me, myself, and I.
Dot, Dot, Dot . . .
There is a lot that happens from milestone to milestone. It’s all in the ellipsis . . . literally! The dot, dot, dot . . . The in-between-times is where our character shines or fails and where we adopt the mindset that leads us to the next fateful moment. I acknowledge myself for the year gone by and take time to applaud my efforts, even if it may feel like it was an accomplishment simply to survive the year. Some of you may feel this way with 2020 behind you! But if you honestly look a little deeper, you can always ﬁnd opportunities to acknowledge the person you’ve become during challenges. The hope you maintained, the determination you gained, and perhaps the newfound grit to make 2021 different.
Put 2020 Behind You
I bet I don’t have to say that twice! Put 2020 behind you? , you may say! To best prepare yourself for the 2021 of your dreams: ﬁrst, close the chapter on the losses of 2020, then bring the lessons and wins with you to 2021. I check this off the list before I even start conjuring up new goals or creating the new year’s action plan. It’s so important to reﬂect and ﬁnd gratitude.
Grateful Is A Great Place To Start
Gratitude helps you see what’s there instead of what isn’t. When you are grateful, you can start to see all the things working in your favor, rather than the things you don’t have. Otherwise, you may be missing potential opportunities if your primary focus is on what’s not working or lacking. Once you realize the jewels in your hands, you would be amazed at how much more you attract.
“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns problems into gifts, failures into success, the unexpected into perfect timing, and mistakes into important events. Gratitude makes sense of the past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.”
Focusing on gratitude may be more comfortable for some of us to grasp than others. If you ﬁnd it challenging to highlight how good you have it, and frankly, we all have those days, there are tons and tons of great gratitude journals to guide you. I love this one, 30 Days of Gratitude. It gives you 30 topics to focus on for 30 days, allowing you to see what perhaps was always there but blind to you in the moment.
It’s incredible what happens when you approach the morning, day, and ultimately the new year with a grateful heart. You’ll ﬁnd yourself happier, lighter, noticing the bite-sized miracles surrounding you every-single-day. They really are everywhere. When we acknowledge them, they actually multiply. You will realize how much you have going for you, the ample support you have around you, and how much closer you are than you may have thought. It’s amazing what happens when your outlook is through the lens of gratitude.
Even your productivity goes through the roof because when you are purposely focused on the good fruit you produce instead of the lack, you will be more, do more, and accomplish more! Directing your attention onto what-is-working is a great way to keep yourself super encouraged and motivated! See more on my article; Your Future Self Will Thank You!
Anything is Possible
Anything is possible in 2021. You have a blank slate ahead of you. The world is your oyster! Find those hidden pearls of greatness around every corner. 2021 is YOUR year to create the life you’ve always imagined no matter what you face. It’s never too late to be who you may have been, and as always, grateful is a great place to start.