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Beginning 2018 Strong with a Simple Exercise

Beginning 2018 Strong with a Simple Exercise

And just like that, in the blink of an eye, another year has come to an end, and a new year has begun. For many of us the past year may not have fulfilled all the hopes we started it with. For many it may have been the ‘fantastic’ year our well wishers wished us to have. And for some it may have been bittersweet – a little bit of the good and a little bit of the not-so-good. But it has been only a few days since this new year has begun and each of us must try to   begin it strong. Maybe you couldn’t achieve all the goals you had in mind for 2017. By Beginning 2018 Strong, you can set yourself   up for a great start to the year!

Wherever you are right now, you can do this simple exercise which will not take you more than fifteen minutes to complete. At the end of this exercise, believe us, you will feel a lot lighter. You will also feel at peace with yourself and with the year that has passed and find yourself looking forward to the new year with renewed enthusiasm. To get started, find yourself a quiet place where you won’t be disturbed, and a pen and a paper. You can also use your phone if you don’t have a pen or a paper.

Here are the ten things that you should proceed to put down –

  1. The goals/ thoughts/ objectives you had in mind when you started 2017
  2. Your achievements for the year/ the best thing that happened to you in 2017
  3. What you wanted to, but couldn’t accomplish for the year
  4. On a scale of 1 to 10, how happy you are with your profession/ professional life (10 being the highest)
  5. On a scale of 1 to 10, how happy you are with your work – life balance (10 being the highest)
  6. Things that you wish hadn’t happened
  7. Things that you wish had happened differently
  8. The single most important thing for 2018
  9. The most important people in your life
  10. Everything   you are grateful for

What now?

When you have put down all of these, you will notice that a lot of the worries or concerns that you had have evaporated. What changed? Nothing. You just took time out to communicate with yourself, to check on yourself. You just indulged in a small act of immense self-love. When you put all of this down, you will have in writing everything that you loved and did not like about the year. You will also find answers to a lot of questions that you may have had for yourself. Notice that these answers did not come from reading a blog post on the internet or from a trusted friend, but from yourself.

Feeling the power of gratitude, of knowing that there are things and people you are grateful for, is in itself an answer to many problems we may have faced. Knowing who the most important people are in our lives, and making them priorities is not something all of us do at a conscious level. Making these small changes in your life lend you immense strength. Asking yourself how happy you are with your professional and your personal life are both questions all of us mostly evade, when we know we aren’t too happy. However, it is only acknowledgement of how we feel that will lead us to change our circumstances for the better.

New years   and birthdays are milestones in time. These two occasions are typically the times when we tend to look back and retrospect. Accepting how you feel, affirming your sense of self, and feeling strong from within about what’s coming up is the only way that one should focus on treating these milestones. True, not everything, or maybe hardly anything may have gone as you planned. When that’s how its been, remember that true strength and power lies in resilience. In getting up with rejuvenated passion, no matter what.

Here is wishing you a very happy and peaceful new year!

P.S. – Let kindness be your motto!

Five Life Lessons from the past year – and here is hoping that I learned them well – Happy in The Now

Five Life Lessons from the past year – and here is hoping that I learned them well – Happy in The Now

And once the storm is over, you won’t remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won’t even be sure, whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm, you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.

― Haruki Murakam

A very Happy New Year to all my readers. This is my first post for the year (and the fiftieth post since I started this blog around a year back – whew!). Life has a way of teaching us its lessons sometimes in a gentle and sometimes in a harsh way. The past year has been stormy in more ways than one for many of us. And as Haruki Murakam said so rightly, we are not the same people we were same time last year. This post is a sum up of the five top insights/learning that got reinforced for me through the past year. I hope that these resonate with you as well and that you will write back to me on what you learned too.

Life Lesson #1: Miracles do happen – Don’t dismiss the moments of magic in your life as coincidences; they are indeed the miracles that you have consciously or sub-consciously prayed for. I have written about my mom’s medical challenges earlier – kidneys gone, iffy heart, multiple strokes, paralysis, speech loss – you name it and she has had it over the past year. Giving up was not an option for her and us even though everybody else almost had. My family and I were blessed to witness the miracle of her come-back to a life of dignity. I now know for sure that yes, miracles can happen – yes, they do – all it takes is a lot of faith, courage and patience.

Life Lesson #2: Choose your relationships with careLife is too short to waste on relationships that suck the energy out of you. Be it at work or at home, opt out of the relationships that take more than give, that withdraw in your times of need and that can’t withstand a bit of wear and tear. You CAN change your environment if you can’t be happy in it. There is a whole world of great people out there waiting for you to reach out – drop the negatives around you and connect to the positive. Who you know has become as important if not more as what you know – choose carefully your co-passengers in the journey of life.

Life Lesson #3: You ALWAYS have a choice – There is a big difference between accepting your fate/destiny/whatever you call it and being resigned to it. It is only when life is embraced in its totality, only when we live in the heights, depths and surfaces can we learn that we can immerse ourselves in the joys and also endure the suffering that is always near by. There is no good answer to “why me?” or “what have I done to deserve this?”.  Instead face each day with the confidence that you can handle everything that life throws at you and get better at “handling” with each passing day.

Life Lesson # 4: If you can’t fly then run – If you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward. Martin Luther King said this and he also said that the time is always right to do the right thing…. The full meaning of these quotes hit me this year in many ways both through my experiences (quit my job and went solo) and of those around me. If you believe in something, trust your instincts and just go for it – a path will open up in front of you step by step, effort by effort.

Life Lesson # 5: The moments are all we have – make the most of it – This is a reinforcement of my “Happy in the Now” philosophy that I have followed for the last year and now I can report confidently that it works, it really does 🙂 The past year has been the happiest year in my life in spite of everything and not because I did anything extraordinary – it is just that I learnt to be conscious of and savour every moment. In the “busy” ness of life, it is so easy to lose track of the moments that make up time. It helps to stop, take a deep breath and be aware of the now – be content.

Sometimes the greatest wisdom is hidden in the simplest of things. The thoughts above may seem like a bunch of platitudes but in the past year, I had some Eureka moments which taught me the meaning behind these platitudes. What common wisdom triggered an uncommon moment for you in the past year? What lesson did life teach YOU that you hope you have learned well? I would love to share in your experiences.

A BIG thank you to all my readers for your support in the past year. Without you, this blog would have died long back.

Pic Courtesy : http://www.flickr.com/photos/stuckincustoms/3155662908/