Are my words for the new year.
My personal new year practice has always held more resonance for me around my birthday (September).
It’s at that time that I have usually completed my journal from the previous year and start to implement a new spiritual plan for the year ahead.
Typically during the time of our collective new year, I like to take inventory of the beliefs, habits, and rituals that I started around my birthday and I will reassess what is working, and let go of what isn’t.
Self cultivation is a practice that I rooted into my life over 15 years ago. At that time I knew I needed to dive within and lay out the groundwork to be stronger and more resilient in response to anything that life threw my way.
There have been times along my journey where I’ve found extreme spiritual balance, and then times where I’ve been completely in a fog, not knowing which direction to take or what was in my future.
There have been times in my journey where life has completely uprooted me, and placed me at the bottom of a mountain allowing me to climb to the top again and to relearn the same lessons that I thought I had previously understood.
I feel like 2020 for me, was a dark storm. Probably one of the darkest I’ve been through thus far in my life. I personally thrive on change, we all do, we need change to grow as a people and as a species.
For me change is what prevents me from falling into my unproductive habits. Habits that are unproductive for me are things like scrolling through social media, binge watching shows, avoiding tasks and projects, overeating and hiding under my blankets.
I found myself falling into these unproductive habits so many times in the first half of this year. I began to see this new life as just that, a new life. This new way of living has brought most of us to come to our center and be still. To sit in patience and be fully present with whatever it is we’re feeling and to accept it.
We can allow ourselves to relish in the certainty that this year is impermanent. Life will be different for us all from now on, we've made it through a collective transformation of humanity.
We can find peace in knowing that it's okay if we don't know what is in our futures. We can allow our futures to unfold in a more natural rhythm with the harmony of uncertainty.
I’ve found that a few rituals have really deeply allowed me to maintain a connection to a higher vibration during this year, and I hope they can be of help to you if you find yourself struggling in any way.
The first ritual is reciting the mantra “no effort.” This mantra came to me from a very close friend. I love this mantra because it reminds me of daoist ideologies. Daoism allows us to be still and to let life happen for us. We can believe in change and the expectations we place on our lives, and we can relax allowing the universe to make those changes for us. NO EFFORT!
The second ritual is not so much a ritual as it is a release. Allowing myself to feel any emotion that comes up and feeling it in its entirety and to completion, regardless of how scary or heavy it may be. Anytime I feel sad with or without reason I release it, anytime I feel anxious I allow it to come up and release it. If I feel powerless, scared, hopeless, I allow all of it to come up and I release it.
I enjoy releasing these emotions to make space for love. There are many ways to release our emotions and I’ve personally found the best way for me to release them is to allow them to fill my body, mind, heart, and space and let them flow through me without clinging to them. We don't always need to respond to our emotions, sometimes there is no reason for their surfacing, and if we can let them come up and go without attaching ourselves to them then we can free ourselves from their burdens.
My third ritual has been to observe. I observe myself as though I am a raven perched on a branch in my mind. I watch everything come and go, I watch for the details and the bigger pictures. I watch my moods, my habits, my actions, and my breath. Observing has allowed me to bring more love into my life instead of filling my life with definitions of how things are or how things should be.
My fourth and final ritual has been to look for love. I believe that only love is real and we can find love in everything we do. I love looking for love in my days and recognizing that life is full of love. Even in the places we least expect it to be. Please let me know where you find love in the comments below. I’ve found love in the visits from hummingbirds, my cats purrs, my self love habits, my cup of tea, my bare feet on the earth, ocean waves crashing on my feet, nostalgic photos of the past, and in my heart.
Thank you for taking the time to read this. Wishing you all a beautiful New Year, ILY 🤍