The end of the year has always been a good time for reflection over the past twelve months as well as a chance to get ready for the income twelve. I want to stick to this tradition and give it my try.
For me this past year has been a very intense one. It has been a year of action, reflection and change. More than every other year I’ve realized how much happiness depends on the actions we take every day. All of those actions do not come out of the blue. They have to be cultivated daily with constance and loads of patience. A small, marginal and continual change is the key.
Some of the actions I took this year to be happier were:
- Start this blog
- Exercise regularly
- Become vegetarian
- Develop a decluttering habit
- Start a new job
- Significantly reduce my internet time
- Made some (few) savings
- Went to Paris
- Develop more truthful relationships
- Read my poetries in public for the first time
- Deepened my self-compassion practice
- Not having bought anything for myself for 3 months
All of those changes have been great in significantly improving my happiness and in giving me strength and even more self-confidence. This process thought me some nice lessons I would like to share with you. This year I have learnt (sometimes the hard way!) that:
- We don’t need much to be happy. Most of the needs we have are very often not real. I’ve learnt this by really decluttering my room and getting rid of many things I didn’t need (clothes, books) and by reducing unnecessary expenses (coffee, snacks, drinks). Next year I will continue my practice by cutting expenses even more and chopping unnecessary needs (I have my list ready!). Go minimal!
- The mind is most of all looking for security. The mind does not like discomfort. It will in fact do everything possible to avoid it and maintain to keep its own thoughts circuits. This is actually fine. That’s what the mind does for survival. The problem is that this very often goes against our happiness as we get entrenched in thoughts webs. Not cool. Next year I will work more on my expectations and on procrastination. Also I will try to risk some more and to test my fears and limits (are they wrong assumptions?).
- It is always better to look inside ourselves even when we don’t want to. Many of our defense mechanism we dislike the most might actually cover up a lot of sweet sides of ourselves we are currently ignoring. The most difficult thing to do is to stick to that discovered fragility even when it seems unbearable. There is were real change can happen. Be fine with this takes practice, but I’m willing to give it a try.
- Priorities matter. We cannot do everything. Especially in a society which constantly stimulates us with new (unnecessary) needs. Knowing our priorities on this can work miracles. This is particularly true if you have to share those priorities with somebody you love. Next year will be priority-focused for me!
So, just to be practical, here are some actions I commit to put into practice for next year:
- Keep on practicing the habits I’ve developed (decluttering, exercising, veggie diet, self-compassion, saving, minimalism)
- Develop more the habits I was less successful on (waking up early, work on my expectations, express myself better, simplify)
- Write more consistently (try some classes, have a collection of poems and/or short stories ready by the end of the year)
- Keep on finding time for myself (no action time)
- Become better at communicating and understanding others’ point of view (including my own)
- Make some serious efforts in finding out my own purpose
- Test my limits and fears more (bye procrastination!)
I hope the next year will be good and inspiring for all of you. For those of you who are trying to make changes in your life I wish you all the best for your success! Also if you have time I am really curious about finding out what your vows (if any!) will be! Have a great new year and thanks for the time we shared together!!!