As more and more women are determined to make a conscious transition through midlife, I see a growing commitment to making the most of the next chapter of their lives. They are determined to live without regrets and create a life that feels truly aligned with who they are. You too may be asking yourself whether or not you are living life fully, and spending your precious time and energy moving towards a more authentic life that feels like the perfect fit for you. So as we move towards the new year how do you start out well and begin the year inspired to create a life that aligns more closely with who you truly are, without a single New Year’s resolution to guide you?

I must admit, I love New Year. My own personal rituals at this time of year offer calm, comfort and balance after the busyness of December. These rituals are not driven by obligations to others, or societal norms. They are not filled with plans or promises, to myself or others. And they are not tied to gift giving or gathering with the clan.

New Year is the perfect time to come home to yourself, discover what you really need, and what will help replenish the well before the next year is upon you. This is what serves our highest good and helps us start strong. It is where our focus is best placed, so let’s not talk lofty goals or guilt-inducing resolutions this New Year.

Over the last 20 years I have developed my own set of New Year’s rituals. They feel intuitively meaningful at this time of year. These small practices help me quiet the external noise and connect to what feels most important.

Rituals give me the chance to carve out some space and time to get off the main highway of social and familial obligations, and turn into a quiet side street where I can slow down and recalibrate before proceeding.

Once the Xmas rush is over, and all the doing grinds to a halt, the opportunity to rediscover being presents itself. Just like with meditation we move through our lives, busy and bustling, and just by showing up and sitting down on the meditation cushion we are expressing a desire and a commitment to getting grounded and centred. And whilst it can take a while for things to settle – the incesant mind chatter, the fidgets, the inclining toward doing – eventually, with practice, or sometimes just on a good day, something shifts. We can relax. We find ourselves enjoying not having to do anything, and we get over a hump. Things just begin to settle. And it feels good. Just being feels good.

As the year ends space opens up for potent new beginnings. The trick is learning to stay the course without prematurely filling up the space with external goals or annual resolutions. To discover its gifts we must revel in the possibilities for a while. Open space that has not yet been filled is charged with promise and potential. And it is in this space that something new can arise. New ideas. New insights. New visions. A new sense of self.

So as you move into this new year, brimming with potential, I offer you a menu of options that may just help you connect to yourself, recognise what you need and consciously recalibrate before you proceed on your path.

Rituals to help you end the year well

1. Take some time to listen inward rather than outward, and deepen your connection to self.

  • Journal your thoughts for an evidence-based way to reduce stress and anxiety, express feelings and boost creativity. This is great way to really hear what you’re thinking. Here is a gift to help guide you.
  • Walk in silence and listen into your own inner voice. Walking improves creative thinking and can therefore help us think laterally about problems and find answers within.
  • Make an “artwork” and letting your thoughts and feelings be reflected back to you for further contemplation. You do not need to be proficient at using art or craft materials for this exercise. Just begin, play, and see what emerges.
  • Seek out a professional counsellor who can hold space for issues that are difficult to resolve, help you gain clarity and support your growth.

2. Get rid of that which is no longer serving you.

  • Go through your home and clearing out spaces. Collect clothing, books and other items you no longer need or use and donate them to a charity.
  • Do a digital declutter of your desktop.
  • Clean out your car.

3. Welcome in the New Year by inviting some peace and harmony.

  • Meditate on the breath, on a candle or on positive wishes for the year ahead. (See BELOW for a FREE Meditation Course)
  • Try a soothing, gentle yoga practice.
  • Unplug and spend time in nature to reduce distractions and calm your nervous system.

4. Cleanse your body, your space and your energy of the old year. 

Like decluttering physical spaces this is a symbolic way of washing away the old which is no longer serving you.

  • Change your bedding and bed clothes so you begin the year in a fresh, clean space.
  • Have a shower, bath or ocean swim before going to bed on New Year’s Eve. Remain mindful of cleansing yourself of the year gone by as you immerse your body.

These rituals deliver the underestimated gifts of New Year. They cannot be purchased or found outside ourselves. In recognising the ending of one year and the new beginnings that await may you be inspired to make more conscious choices about how to move forward this year. 

As you look toward the new year ahead, and any things that you plan to accomplish, may you include becoming your most authentic self.

Wishing you a beautiful start to 2024!

 

About Michelle Seelig

Michelle Seelig is a Counsellor, Yoga Instructor, Meditation Teacher and Coach working with women to help them get unstuck, rediscover the joy and meaning in their lives and ultimately grow into the person they were truly meant to become. If you would like some support on your midlife journey  book a Complimentary Discovery Call over here and together we can discuss your unique needs.