Time for reflections in the New Year

Time for reflections in the New Year

As the year comes to an end, one of my favourite things to do is to reflect on all that happened in the year and then to plan for the upcoming year. This is also something I'm guiding my clients to do and it helps them get clarity and move towards their goals.

Do you know that this simple practice of reflection will give you the perfect opportunity to put the full year in perspective and focus on what’s important in your life.

And I know, when the year hasn’t gone as planned, we just want to put it behind and not remind ourselves about it… and move on to the New Year. However, the process of reflecting allows you to learn lessons from mistakes and setbacks even when things haven't worked out.

So, take some time to reflect on your 2021, putting into perspective all that you’ve been through. Last year has had its challenges for all of us, as we’ve been through Covid-19 and restrictions that came because of it. And even with the difficulties we’ve been through, when you stop to reflect, there will be moments to celebrate some of the good things you’ve experienced.

For me it’s not about waiting until the 1st of January to make positive changes, but do it through the year. Nevertheless, the end of the year is a natural opportunity to take time to reflect and review and look at the bigger picture of how 2021 went.

Let's start by looking at what you have already achieved this year. Celebrate your wins and accomplishments, however small these are as they help you to get to the bigger goals.

I’m sharing nine questions that you can ask yourself as you reflect back on your year.

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What are you grateful for in 2021? It could be spending more time with your family and at home because of lockdown. Or trying a new hobby like online Bollywood dancing or painting.

What wellness goals did you achieve? Did you improve your evening routine and as result now feel refreshed and alert in the mornings. Or did you lose weight and now fit back into your clothes more comfortably.

How did you improve your self-care over 2021? What did you do to unwind, relax and look after yourself better? It could have been spending time in nature or having a warm bath with scented candles to pamper yourself.

What new habits did you begin? This is something new that you added in 2021, for instance starting the day with a glass of water or having a satisfying breakfast to keep you going through the mornings.

What bad habits did you let go off? This is something that was unhealthy and you made a change to improve your health, like stopping fizzy drinks or reducing sugar in your tea.

What are you proud of that you want to keep continuing? This could be something as easy as taking a piece of fruit to work to have as a snack.

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Then next think about where you failed? it’s important that you identify this so as not to repeat the same mistakes or to see where you can improve in the coming year. For instance, you didn’t achieve your weight loss goal because your diet program was too restrictive and you couldn’t eat your traditional meals. So you now know that strict diets don't work for you. Don't be hard on yourself when you fail, instead learn so that you can do it differently next year. Your failures don’t define you but show you that you need to make a change to be successful.

What do you wish you had made time to do? Think about why you didn’t do it and what you could do differently. Maybe you didn't have much time because you were busy at work or when looking after your family and couldn't exercise.

What would you like your life to look like one year from now? Do you want to look and feel good and regain your confidence. Or do you want to have more energy so you don't have the mid-afternoon slump. You can achieve this only when you prioritise your wellness and get started with making changes.

I hope you take some time to reflect back on 2021, celebrating what you’ve achieved and then think of how it could have improved. Then decide on what you’d like this brand New Year to look like.

Sujata Din is a Certified Health Coach and Certified Professional Cancer Coach. In this regular column for iGlobal, she offers some special insights, from useful wellness tips to recipes for creations that are not only delicious but also healthy.

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