The quiet(ish) week between Christmas and New Years always eludes me. Before having kids, I would spend it binge watching tv and shopping the massive sales, sleeping in and catching up with friends. Things look a bit different for us now as a family. With the hype and excitement of Christmas behind us, what should that week off right before the end of the year look like?
I recently came across this article on Oprah Daily, urging its readers to mindfully take stock of the good from the year just past. I love this idea and immediately made a note to myself to do the same and following their instructions. It’s so easy to get caught up in the busyness of our lives. How hard can it really be to take a few moments and actively remember the highlights of the year and what we want for the year ahead?
If your family life is like mine, it can actually be quite challenging to take an hour out to consciously reflect! So, to tag on to what Oprah’s team created, here is the abbreviated Le Wren version in the hopes of giving you that all important moment of reflection and intention setting, without the extra homework and time it so often requires.
1. Create a 2022 “best of” album on your phone
I have about 7k photos on my phone right now. I’m not kidding. I always tell myself I’m going to clean it up but I never do. However, this year, I am going to take 10 min out and scroll through the entire year’s photos and create a 2022 “Best of” photo album on my phone. The act of doing this reminds me of all those wonderful moments I have likely forgotten from throughout the course of the year – and it may also help me delete all the ones I don’t actually need to hold to in the process.
2. Create 2-3 intentions for the new year
I’ve never been one for New Years resolutions, but I can absolutely get behind the idea of intention setting. By completing #1, I’ll likely be reminded of all the great memories and times when I felt happiest and most content. I’ll use those memories to create my intentions for the new year.
What do I want to do more of? What do I want to let go of? We get so caught up in all the things we have to do as adults and parents and caregivers – what do we want to do more of? Then, to make sure I don’t forget these brilliant thoughts halfway through March or April or May, I’ll share them with friends, for accountability-sake. Of course if writing them down helps you remember, by all means do that too.
3. What are you proud of?
And finally, as part of the reflecting and intention setting process, remind yourself of 2-3 things you’re really proud of that happened this year. They could be from any facet of your life – work, family, friends, personal – but try to think beyond the usual accomplishments. Perhaps you created (and held) a personal boundary with a tricky friend or family member. Maybe you gave yourself grace in certain situations when you would’ve been hard on yourself. Maybe you did something you never thought you could!
This is about you and what makes you proud of you. We spend a lot of time patting others on the back; take a moment to do the same for yourself.