Closing well prepares you to start well
It is four weeks to Christmas and five to New Year's Day. For much of my life, I hit a major slump sometime between December 20th and January 1st for a few days. I would look back on my year and feel I should be in a better place with respect to some or many areas of my life and my mind would flood with regrets about this or that.
Self-awareness offers great insights. It means learning from the past and not being a prisoner of it. So much of what we do and think is habitual. Science says that 50 percent of what we do on a daily basis is habitual. 90 percent of our thoughts are the same as the ones we had yesterday. And these patterns often determine our lives more than is helpful.
The great thing about thoughts and habits is that they can be changed. Just like going to the gym to get our body fit, we can learn tools like meditation and mindfulness and how to self reflect constructively to gain a fit mind.
There are those that love the season of good will and others that don't like it so well. Whatever your viewpoint, it is possible for all of us to set ourselves up for the best Christmas possible and in turn for the best end of year and the best 2019 possible.
Having a good life starts with having a good day. If you want to close 2018 well, have a look at your life this week and see what needs to be addressed to make your life better. Here are some questions that may inspire ideas - but one caution - don't beat yourself up. Take an honest look and if you feel you can do or be better, take action.
Do you like yourself and your life? Are there changes you wish to make to your life to bring more happiness or meaning to it? Are you on top of things at home and at work? Are your work, home and / or car environments the way you want them to be? Are your relationships causing you angst? Now is an excellent time to deal with these things so that you close well and prepare to open well and are in the best frame of mind for the Christmas season.
1. Relationships - if you are uneasy in any of your relationships, sit with yourself and decide what you can do to address. As a wise friend shared with me a few weeks ago - if you have a problem with anyone, talk to them and not about them. Always surround yourself with good people and invest in them. Are you doing that ?
2. If there are work matters hanging, that are causing stress or blocking progress, sit down with those involved and do what needs to be done. In life, we often avoid confrontation or things that challenge us but it never helps. It makes problems worse.
3. Get your home the way you want it with whatever resources you have available. De-clutter. Tidy up. Do the little or big jobs you had planned and if there isn't time, plan when they will get done and follow through.
4. Get your car and work environment in order.
5. Settle bills (or work out a plan to do so) and if owed money, follow up.
If you sort your part in all things, you will feel the better for it. This is the all we can do. Blame and procrastination are disempowering. Start today and set yourself up for a powerful 2019.