Instead of resolutions, try this.
Through the holiday season (or Solstichristmakah, as we like to call it at our house) I had a chance to both renew old and begin new experiments in reflection + celebration, in both solitary + communal ways.
Songs and stories, quiet nights and long raucous ones filled with laughter and song.
Also, I drove all the way to the ocean.
When I got there I let the sea air sink into my skin and my hair and my lungs and my bones.
I thanked it for being the source of life and for renewing me again and again with rain, tears, sustenance + inspiration. (And I brought a little of it's magic back here for you :)
On my way there I reconnected with dear ones.
In the mountains of Montana I snuggled up with former college roommates in a snowstorm.
All former vegetarians, we huddled around cast iron pans of steak and roasted Brussels sprouts with bacon :)
In Idaho I drove through icy mountain passes + listened to Harry Potter to keep my hands steady and mind from thinking too seriously about anything.
In Oregon I gathered with multiple families of dear friends and their sweet kids. Lots of caring (and witnessing amazing parenting), and silly games, foosball, puzzles, lap times + laughter.
After a much quicker journey home by air, I’m settling down and in. Letting my unpacking be an exhale. Grounding myself in familiarity--a favorite tea cup, the soft touch of wood floors for my feet, the gift of space.
And I am asking the question that I ask again and again and again, and that maybe you are too as the year opens before us:
What do I need now?
Regardless of how your holiday time was, as it winds down this might be just the perfect time to take a few breaths, make a cup of tea, grab a special notebook, and reflect on these questions:
(The way to make this happen is to keep it simple. This only needs to take 10-20 minutes. Give yourself a 1-3 minute timer to free write after each question. You can always come back if more juicy reflection feels good.)
::: What from this past year are you ready to bless + release? What could use a compassionate letting go? (Maybe it is a fear, a judgment, or a limitation.)
::: What did you do last year that you're really excited about? What really lit you up? What surprised + delighted you? (Resist the urge to list accomplishments by more external forces.)
::: Have two or three experiences in mind? Sink into one of them – how did you FEEL? Jot down 3-5 words for each one, even make up words if you want. Try to capture the zing!
Now you’re going to ponder what excites you about the coming year, using your feeling words as a guide. The idea isn’t to do more, but to make choices that help you feel the way you want to feel.
Give yourself 1-3 minutes for each of these questions:
::: What could you change in your daily routine or tasks to help you feel these feelings? (Think tiny, easy, fun.)
::: What experience could you create or try to help you feel these feelings? (Go a little bigger, feel your way to it.)
::: Who could you ask for help and where could you get support to help you feel these feelings?
Have fun with this, and let me know how it goes!
In the meantime, take sweet care of yourself.