Year-end brings a natural inclination to reflect on what we did well in 2017. How close did we come to the vision and goals we set 12 months earlier? What could we have done better? What gifts and lessons did the year bring us? What habits or behaviors do we want to leave at the doorstep of 2018?
These are provocative questions we could each ask ourselves, and hopefully many of us do, throughout the year. But as life scurries about and we get caught up in the day-to-day, it is easy to slip into autopilot, to snuggle in the comfy confines of routine and habit.
For me, I constantly check in with what triggers me, what causes emotional reaction, whether people or situations. Those are ideal moments to teach me what the wounded child deep inside has stirred up and upset me. As an internal exercise, it frees me from automatic reactions, enhances my desire to learn more about myself and heals wounds that need healing.
We each have wounds and shadow beliefs in our subconscious, regardless of how great we see our childhoods. I have yet to meet a client, myself included, who doesn’t harbor the wound of “not good enough” or “unworthy.” That self-perception commonly has roots in situations or people that made us feel unworthy. The flip-side, however, also rings true. If we are brought up believing we are special, the moment someone finds us not special, the wound of unworthy is triggered.
I strive always to see how these wounds tend to surface. When my inner child is wounded, my gut reaction is to strike out and quickly respond without sitting with it. I welcome those situations. They are chances for me to grow and help my child heal. It isn’t easy, but gets easier the more I take advantage of those opportunities. As a Debbie Ford Master Integrative Coach, I adhere to Debbie Ford’s words, “You aren’t responsible for your first thought, but you are responsible for your next thought.”
In reviewing my 2017, I sought to identify the behaviors and characteristics I want to leave behind. One that pops up is impatience. Although I don’t denigrate impatience as wrong, it does get me in trouble, bringing reactions and invoking feelings I’d rather not have. I also want to leave behind negative self-body talk. As a woman, I know I am not alone here. The way I feel about my body on any given day can dictate how content I am that day. Who would I be without that little horrible habit? A more habitually happy person.
Looking towards 2018, what qualities can I strengthen to better achieve my goals and fortify myself for what may come my way? I have given this much thought. Those qualities are acceptance, surrender and faith, meaning the faith to accept whatever happens knowing that everything happens for a reason and is exactly as it should be. I may not always see the big picture, but I trust in the Universe and that it has my back.
None of us gets through life without bumps and bruises. None escapes the drama or illness in the lives of our loved ones or ourselves. Strengthening the qualities of acceptance, surrender and faith bolsters me. I reached my goal for 2017 of climbing Kilimanjaro with strength, fortitude and gratitude.
As you contemplate 2018, I invite you to consider the gift of life coaching to help you uncover the hidden aspects of yourself directing your life and creating self-sabotaging results.
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I am heading in to 2018 with love in my heart and faith by my side. And I say, “Bring it on!”
In peace and light,