January is a time for me to re-organise myself and my surroundings – and I’m always a bit slow to shrug off the Christmas holidays and get back to some work.
This year, I have been kinder to myself – especially as I was poorly over Christmas – and have decided that as long as I take small, sturdy steps in the right direction and set myself a starting date – that I can still be planning and organising after New Year’s Day. Although my main focus is on setting goals for 2017, I believe that celebrating our successes of the past year is extremely important. It sets a solid foundation of belief in our own abilities – by remembering the obstacles we have hurdled and the positive steps we have made towards our goals and our own Truth.
I hope that by reading this, you will see the benefit of a ‘gratitude journal’ approach to Life, whether this be on a daily, weekly, monthly or annual basis.
My work with Damsels in Success has introduced this concept to me and it is definitely providing me with a more positive outlook on my Life.
Another idea I’m keen to try for 2017 is a ‘gratitude’ or ‘good times’ jar. It involves any sort of large preserving jar or glass container, small pieces of coloured paper and a pen. Sit these items somewhere prominent in your house and jot down any happy, fun, positive or meaningful experiences you have ( while they’re still fresh in your mind). Fold up your paper, pop it in the jar – and then when it comes to New Year’s Eve – tip all your happiness notes out and open them up … Have fun remembering what a fantastic time you’ve had – and all the things to be grateful for in 2017 !
I have also chosen to share this as a post to highlight how important self-development is to us all and how it can help someone to deal with the ‘nasty bits’ that Life can, and usually does, throw at us when we least expect it. This has been my personal experience and I have met many like-minded people during the year who feel the same way …
I’m especially keen to celebrate my successes of 2016 – as I feel that I have grown immensely as a person over the past 12 months.
The paths I chose in the latter part of 2015 led me to very interesting ‘places’ in early 2016 and I embarked on a year of profound personal development – without necessarily realising it at the time. I made choices, such as taking part in a couple of extremely rewarding coaching circles, which taught me a great deal about myself and the strengths I didn’t realise I possessed. My counselling sessions continued, yet began to work more effectively because of my increased insight. A series of anti-stress coaching sessions proved to be a major breakthrough for me, because my tutor was absolutely amazing and seemed instinctively tuned in to just what I needed to hear & learn. Lightbulbs were switching on all over the place and I lapped up every tip and anecdote.
Towards the end of the year, I was introduced ( through my coaching-circle life coach) to the world of ‘Damsels in Success’ – which was setting up a new group of ‘Damsels’ in Colchester. I am now part of an ongoing programme of learning and collaboration with like-minded women (mostly self-employed) who are dedicated to their personal growth and supporting each other along their journeys – both as individuals and also as part of something bigger, truly significant and excitingly powerful.
Against the background of what seemed to be more than my fair share of personal stress – caused by my employment and family issues – my positive personal development journey has been able to ensure that the ‘good’ outweighed the ‘bad’. This is pretty awesome considering that the ‘bad’ was at times ‘extremely bad’.
My brother & sister, my 3 closest friends and above all – my partner – have been my special survival kit when my own resources failed me. I have never had a year when this has been so keenly felt and appreciated as in 2016. This is with great thanks to them and also down to what I have learnt about others – who to trust and keep close to my heart – and who to let go …
So here is my list of celebration & gratitude for 2016 – relating specifically to my personal development. I hope this post will inspire you to keep track of your successes and special moments throughout 2017 – so that you can look back at the end of the year on the many good things you’ve achieved and how much you’ve learnt …
My Top 12 things to celebrate from the 12 months of 2016-:
1 – I no longer crave friendship. I can sustain myself in my current situation and realise that “I am enough”. I can truly be myself and accept what comes my way because of that.
2 – I no longer look for validation from others to make me feel accepted. I have accepted – so anything else is a bonus.
3 – I will not be made to do something that is discordant with my values. Instead, I will stand my ground, accept the consequences and go my own way.
4 – I will not be pressurised into conforming to the group expectation. I can and will be brave enough to turn away and take time out.
5 – I have learnt to keep myself protected – by only revealing personal information appropriate to each individual circumstance.
6 – I no longer allow others to make me doubt my own Truth & Power and have learnt to identify people who drain me.
7 – I am now able to make reasonable demands of those close to me, if I find that they are not appreciating my needs , or if I need them to help or reassure me.
8 – I was brave enough to leave the job that I hated.
9 – I know now that I can achieve anything if I truly believe in it and follow trusted methods to reach my goal.
10 – I met some truly awesome women in 2016 !
11 – I am deeply grateful for the special people I had close to me in 2016.
12 – I finally learnt to love myself 💕
The resulting benefits to me and my peace of mind have been substantial – I think it can best be described as an overwhelming sense of freedom …