By Jaymie Meyer, CWP, ERYT500
Certified New Life Story Coach, Coach Training Alliance Life Coach
Hibernation and dormancy are accepted parts of nature’s cycle. But even in the darkness of winter, the anticipation of lighter days gives reason to celebrate the continuing cycle of life. Cultures the world over use the powerful symbol of light – especially during the winter solstice – to honor the life-giving properties of the sun.
The winter solstice also offers us a wonderful opportunity for contemplation. Embracing this time as a period for self-reflection helps us to prepare for the birth of the New Year.
Of course, gaining perspective on how far you’ve come – and how far you still wish to go – is a lifelong process. Goals change as we do. Yet our dreams are as vital to us at 22 as they are when we’re 82!
Through this holiday season, I invite you to explore both the gifts and challenges this past year has brought. Start by contemplating these questions, alone or with loved ones:
- What brought you deep satisfaction in 2013?
- What dreams will you hold for yourself in 2014?
- What new habits would you like to cultivate?
You may also find it helpful to chart the major areas of your life right now on a Life Wheel. These areas include
- Health – attending to your physical body
- Family/Friends – time spent with those who matter to you
- Recreation – your time at play and general R&R
- Personal Growth – attending to personal beliefs and growth
- Environment – your life at home and in the community
- Romance – significant other/partner
- Business/Career – your work
- Finances – your money
The closer to the hub you mark each area, the less time you currently spend there. For instance, if you spend less time on health, romance, growth and recreation than on the other four areas, your Life Wheel might look something like this:
Everyone’s Life Wheel will be different, and most of us won’t have a perfect one. But “perfect” isn’t the goal. There are no “good” or “bad” results, and an unbalanced wheel doesn’t necessarily mean you have to make changes.
That said, my clients have shown me time and again how even the smallest of changes in one area can lead to positive, unexpected changes in many others – in a sense, the Butterfly Effect on the personal scale.
If you do find areas in which you’d like to improve, choose one to focus on for now; any others, you can focus on each in their turn. It’s my belief that everyone possesses the internal wisdom they need to reveal the next steps on their path.
The best recipe for successful change is consistency – over a long period of time without interruption. Such continuity, as Pauline R. Kezer has put it, “gives us roots; change gives us branches, letting us stretch and grow and reach new heights.”