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New Beginnings

January 5, 2013

By Jacinta Hin

I love the energy of the first week of the new year. That energy is reflected in people sharing wishes and intentions, local rituals ringing in the new year, and messages from spiritual and intellectual  teachers that I admire. Around the globe people are united in their desire to make the new year one that counts; they are willing to make changes that will benefit themselves and the world as a whole. Millions are reflecting on the past year and deciding what to leave behind, what to bring forward and what to begin creating. Consciously or unconsciously all of them, in their own way, are (re)committing to a more authentic and purposeful life. Just imagine for a second how magical that is.

This week I also renewed my vows (so to speak) and picked up my pen and paper to write down my list for the year. I am certainly ready for something new, and am excited to get started on my resolutions. At the same time, I feel it’s important to stand still and take note of where I am in my life, and where I sense I could be going if I make the right choices. I also don’t feel a need to radically close old chapters of my life and jump straight into what’s ahead of me.

Yet these first days of the new year are an opportunity for deeper than usual reflection.  As all around us people are more or less doing the same, we can take note of how they go about it. We can take a ride on the collective mood and motivation for change. This is indeed a good time to be bold about our dreams and desires.

The challenge for many of us is to hold on to that boldness and bring it forward throughout the year. To keep the spirit of new beginnings with us and stay committed to what we promised ourselves.

We easily fall back into old habits and behaviors. We forget, get scared or lose confidence. We keep postponing action. We might make a few attempts but eventually give up. We are busy maintaining life as it is; there’s never any time left for something new.

So how can we make it work? How can we make this new year, so full of promises and possibilities, a year that really matters?

Here are a few tips that could help you bridge the gap between your wishes and reality.

  1. Appreciate where you are in your life at this very moment. Life is a journey, not a destination. Appreciate all aspects of your life, not just parts of it. Pay tribute to the bad stuff, as this might very well be the prologue to a new chapter.
  2. Realize that your life is forever flowing. You’re always in transition. At any given moment, you are ending one thing, in the middle of another thing and at the beginning of something else. We are complex human beings. What makes total sense today might be a thing of the past tomorrow. We cannot control all that happens. Unforeseen challenges come our way all the time.
  3.  Make it about who you really are and how you truly want to live your life. Forget about the boring “wanna lose weight” goal that has been haunting you for years and instead opt for one that brings out the best in you. Honor your uniqueness. Dare to let go of what you believe is expected of you, by yourself and others, and focus on what you actually want.
  4. Look for ways to review your intentions all the time. Ideally you should check in at regular times: daily, weekly…whatever works for you.
  5. Stick with the time-tested way to make things happen: one step at a time. This also means that you can get started right now. Every day perform one action, even for just five seconds, which moves you closer to the goal you want to achieve.
  6. Most importantly, decide on the one or two things that are really going to make a difference. This could be your weight goal, but it could also be an intention (to live from the heart, for instance) or a new perspective on what’s important.

 

LABELS:   Beginning   Desires   Dreams   Goals   Intention   New Year   Reflection  
About the author: Jacinta Hin was born in the Netherlands and has been living in Tokyo, Japan, since 1989. Her professional background is in human resources, career management and coaching. She is passionate about helping people, herself included, discover new perspectives of possibility, move to embracing and working with their transitions, and designing and realizing changes aligned with who they truly are and what they truly want from their lives.
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