What Do You Want to Bring Forward into the New Year?

Jan 10, 2024 | Design Your Life | 0 comments

What are you going to do this year? What goals and dreams are you thinking about? How will you design your life in 2024? 

Recently I read an article in the New York Times titled This Year, Make a Resolution About Something Bigger Than Yourself and the author’s words kept coming back to me. Basically, he asks the reader to consider focusing on improving the world. That’s a big ask, and improving the world seems pretty impossible right now. Yet, I too believe that small actions done with hope, love and kindness can change the world. Tiny choices, consistently made create change – just like throwing pebbles into a still lake creates ripples. Something to think about as we plan forward.

What do you want to do this year? What changes might you want to make, what dreams do you want to manifest? And maybe, what decisions do you want to make to help change the world for the better?

Decisions are like resolutions, but there’s more commitment. And if that sounds overwhelming, think about tiny steps. Is there something in your world you want to impact? If so, remember you can go at your own pace, one tiny step at a time.

As you think about this year, I encourage you to first look back instead of looking forward. No, we shouldn’t get trapped in the past, but we can pause to see what we want to carry into this year. And what we might want to leave behind.

Our wins — and even our challenges and how we faced them — have things to teach us. How we lived our values in the past year can remind us what we can do this year … or give us ideas for new ways to engage. 

Celebrate Where You’ve Been

One great place to start is to celebrate where you’ve been. Grab a pen and paper and make a list of things you want to celebrate. They might include:

  • Things you accomplished — big or small
  • Connections you made with family, friends, new people
  • Moments of delight or joy or wonder 
  • Times you were engaged and energized by what you did
  • Times you felt deep connection with others or ideas
  • Times you experienced awe or gratitude

Start by simply freewriting your list, but if you get stuck, take a look at your calendar, your pictures, or any other records you have. A lot of times we forget good things that happened or things that we accomplished — even if they seemed unforgettable at the time. 

Lessons to Bring Forward from Challenges

We all have challenges, and we may be tempted to ignore them. But there is wisdom to be garnered from looking at your challenges. How you face adversity can teach you a lot. Make a list of the biggest challenges you faced last year. How did you get through each one? 

  • Did you have to get out of your comfort zone?
  • Did you ask for, or let in, help? 
  • Did you use laughter? 
  • Did you rely on your community? 
  • Did you do more self-care — or put yourself last temporarily? 
  • Did you tap into strengths you didn’t know you had? 

Really look at the different ways you got through. These are great tools for you going forward. 

Sometimes we learn resilience and build our toolkit for hard times through what we did that works. Other times, we learn from what didn’t serve us well. 

You can write reminders to yourself to help you bring forward the lessons for the next challenge you face. 

What Is Old You Bringing into the New Year?

Now looking at both lists you made, what do you want to bring forward into the new year? 

One way to look at this is to ask yourself these questions: 

  • What do I want more of in the new year? 
  • What do I want less of? 
  • What impact do I want to make?

You can’t control everything, of course, but you can make choices and take steps to design your life in a way more in-line with your desires, values and who you see yourself as a person. 

This is a great time to gain clarity on what really matters to you, what lights you up, what makes you feel fulfilled. Try my free guide, 3 Steps to Having a Meaningful Life You Love, to help you learn from yourself and design a life you love for the new year and beyond. 

Wishing you well for 2024.

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Hi, I’m Melanie!

I’m a Journaling and Joy Coach and I believe your story is the key to the life you want.

I guide my clients through intentional processes to find the answers waiting for you in your stories, bringing compassion, deep listening — and fun — to the process.

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