A Monthly Wellness Column
By Amie Mignatti
As we slide into the last month of the year and look forward to the beginning of not only a new year, but also a new decade, let’s pause for a moment and reflect on our lives and how far we’ve come.
By taking a step back and measuring our lives over a period of twelve months and four seasons, we are able to see our growth, successes, challenges and stumbles. We can take a birds-eye view of everything that has happened and see how the past has led us to where we are now. And ask yourselves, where are you now and where did you begin?
At this time of year, I love to take out my journal and re-read my goals that I set this time last year, some which were abandoned mid-way, and others which I focused on and pursued. I like to look at the unexpected opportunities that arose throughout the year, and how those led me down a path that I hadn’t yet dreamed. I also see the challenges, have a deeper look at the feelings surrounding them, and then see how I’ve accomplished many things- both large and small- even in the face of difficulty.
And as I sit by myself, one year later, I begin to write new goals based on my successes (and failures) from the past year. I am also able to understand what I am capable of, what will require more time and investment, what may be a longer term goal or project and what may not be realistic. I notice, this year, that I am getting older and wiser, and that I have learned from my past. At the same time, my dreams are still bigger than me, and my appetite to fulfill them is equally as voracious as in the past, but I will treat reaching them as a marathon, rather than a horse race.
I would encourage each of you to sit down with your pen, by yourself, with space and uninterrupted time to reflect. If you have a practice of goal setting and/or journaling, then now is the time to open those books and re-read what you’ve written and what your dreams were. If not, then we can all start on the same page.
I ask myself these questions every year, for reflection:
- What did I accomplish that I set out to do?
- What did I accomplish that I didn’t set out to do, but that found me?
- What did I attempt that didn’t come to fruition?
- What were my needs throughout the year on a physical, emotional and spiritual level?
- Were these needs met? How or how not?
And then I ask myself these questions, for the future:
- What do I want to accomplish in the next year?
- What do I need in order to reach these goals?
- Where am I now in relation to these?
- How can I nurture myself on a physical, emotional and spiritual level?
- How can I begin?
One of the best things I that I have (and just started having this year!) is an Accountability Partner. She is my best friend in Texas, and one of the most inspirational people I know. She and I have monthly Skype meetings where we tell each other what we’re doing and what our goals are for the coming month. We then reflect back exactly what we’ve heard from the other person, no ideas or thoughts, only what we’ve heard. After that, we give each other ideas based on our perspective and give each other tasks to complete and deadlines with them.
Having this has brought much more clarity to my life. I’m self-employed, and have a whole lot going on in business and in my personal life, and so after starting these monthly check-ins, I found that my productivity increased, as did the frequency of new ideas and the ease of finding pathways to get to them. Both she and the deadlines were essential to completing each task and each step towards my bigger goals.
So as we close out this year, reflect on your life. Look for unfinished projects or goals, projects that you have not yet started but are still burning in you, and celebrate everything that you have achieved. It may be more than you thought.
Next, set your inner compass to new beginnings and a new start in January and take small steps each and every day to accomplish what you’ve set out to do. Be mindful of your energy, of your feelings and your own intuition. I really suggest keeping a journal where you chronicle your feelings in relation to your actions; you’d be amazed at what you can learn about yourself by re-visiting these often. Push yourself out of your comfort zone and take steps to greatness. The world needs your spirit, your light and your dreams!
Amie Mignatti is committed to bringing children and adults into the outdoors, so that they can learn new skills, feel at home in nature, and be in a space where they can connect more deeply with themselves. She is confident that more time spent outdoors can lead to a healthier and calmer life, a more positive attitude and a never ending sense of wonder. She is happiest when she and her family are in the forest around the campfire with good friends. She leads courses and retreats for all ages. http://www.amiemignatti.com