Looking back over our year can be a very transforming experience. Whether or not the year has been a difficult one, we often overlook the fact that we may have gone through some experiences that ended up changing us on some level.
I personally love this time of year to take a good look at what has transpired over the previous twelve months, and then process any unresolved issues I may be holding onto.
I used to write out my year, both my grievances and blessings, and then do a simple ceremony to “let go” of any painful, residual thoughts about what happened by burning the list of grievances. But I noticed that I’d still find those complaints creeping along with me into the following year.
So last year I decided to try something different, and I was pretty impressed with how well it worked to shift my feelings about the challenges of the previous year.
To begin, I made sure that I had some alone time (about 60 minutes) so that I could create a sacred, and quiet, space. I set up a simple alter, lit candles, played gentle music, and called in the angels.
Then I started with a list of my grievances, and I kept each item short and to the point. Then I categorized it into one of two categories: 1) Not my fault, and 2) I did the best I could.
Not my fault.
We cannot get away from those experiences from which we have no control. So yes, sometimes bad things just happen, and there’s nothing we can do about it. However, if we continue to blame that event for our difficult situation, we will continue to suffer, and remain disempowered and stuck. We have to decide that even though the situation was not our fault, how we react to it is our choosing. And, even though something bad happened, we do have the power, right this moment, to make a new choice, (even a small one), from wherever we are and change our situation.
I did the best I could.
Often the difficult situations in our life happen because of a choice we made; we thought we were making a choice that served us, and then it turned out that it didn’t. All we can do is give ourselves a break, and decide to do better – we still have the power to choose again, and that’s important to remember.
Next, divide your grievances into one of these two categories. I simply highlighted the “not my faults,” with a pink highlighter.
Now here’s where this gets powerful. State your grievance out loud, with as much description as you want. Then you’ll either follow it up with:
But this situation was not my fault. No, it wasn’t fair. And I hate that it happened. But it was not my fault. I choose right now to stop letting this situation have any power over me, whatsoever! I now reclaim my power, and gratefully accept responsibility to create my own life from where I am by making choices that honor the life I want to create.
And my new choice is (you fill in the blank).
~~ or ~~
I did not make a very good choice. But I did the best I could at that time. Now I have more clarity, and I know I can make a choice that will help move me out of this situation. And my new choice is to (you fill in the blank).
Go through your entire list, and reclaim your power with every single grievance, following it up with some step, or action, that you can take to move forward.
You may want to journal about any new decisions, choices, or action steps you want to take so that you won’t forget them later.
After you have gone through your list of grievances, toss the list, shred it, do whatever you feel called to do. And then, state out loud with power: YES, YES, YES! Do this about 35 times.
Now sit down, and out loud, review the blessings of your previous year. Try to find one for each month. Start off saying, “I am so happy and thankful that….” and then go into great detail about what you are grateful for. Follow up each item with “thank you, thank you, thank you.”
This is a very powerful process, and I’ve found it to be a very transforming one, because simply wanting to let go of a painful experience is often not enough. We have to reclaim our power, and take an action that honors our commitment to letting it go, and moving forward again.
If you are inspired to try this process, join me in the New Age Forums: Reviewing Your Year Thread and let me know how it goes!
And here’s an article I wrote that describes how to set up your own Angelic Circle for sacred space.