As 2014 draws to a close, the tradition of setting resolutions for the new year is upon us.
But for many years, my resolutions to do better came from a place of guilt: I must hit the gym and lose 10 pounds! I promise to call my mother more often! I'll finally start doing that gratitude practice, I swear!
And of course, there's starting off the new year with, "I didn't quite get it right last year, but this year I'll try harder!" This wasn't exactly a healthy attitude, either.
What the new year does give us is a great opportunity to pause, reflect, give thanks and set new intentions.
So I created a new tradition with my family and friends, and now on every New Year's Eve we set our intentions for the new year. I invite you to join us! It's fun to share your vision in a circle (and kids can participate too!) but you can also do this process on your own.
Here are five guilt-free steps to manifesting a new year of total abundance:
1. Gather your art supplies and find a quiet space.
You will need to start with a piece of paper and an envelope for each person. You may also want to gather plenty of colored pencils, markers or paint, to help make your paper pretty. Pick a quiet place and time where you can focus and allow your creative juices to flow.
2. Write down your intentions for the new year on a piece of paper.
This is not a list of resolutions, but rather an idyllic vision of the coming year, and how you see it unfolding perfectly for you. It can be in the form of a list, a paragraph (or several), or perhaps you'd like to draw a picture. Do you want to welcome more clarity into your life? More laughter? Better health? A new job? Write it all down, and be descriptive and clear. Decorate your paper while you visualize all of the good things that you've put on your list coming to fruition.
3. When you are complete, seal the paper in an envelope and offer a blessing of gratitude.
I have a friend that likes to fill her envelope with glitter, and my daughters like to kiss their envelopes to give their wishes a little extra power. As you seal your envelope, you can say a silent prayer, offer a blessing of gratitude to a higher power for bringing the manifestations into your life, or do whatever feels right to you.
4. Keep the envelope in a safe place until the next New Year's Eve.
No peeking! But make sure the place you've picked isn't so safe that you won't be able to find it again when you want to.
5. One year from now, open the envelope and reflect.
How did the year compare to your vision? Did you experience, achieve and realize all that you wanted to? These envelopes are also fun to keep and look back at many years to come. I recently found one from five years ago, and was so pleased to see that all of my intentions had come true, and then some.
New years, like birthdays or other milestones on the calendar, are a wonderful time to make a change. Often, the most powerful change we can make is an internal shift, such as a shift from fear to excited anticipation, or from despair to hope.
To give yourself a powerful start this new year, set your intentions with purposeful vision, and give thanks as the manifestations unfold.