The Real Magic of The Holiday Season Is THIS | Intuitive Business Woman

In our modern world, the holiday season can be one of the most stressful times of year.

With presents to buy …
parties to attend …
decorations to hang …
travel to endure …

To say nothing of all the emotional upheaval that comes from having to face the reality of your “loved ones” (or the lack thereof) …

So many people just try to knuckle down and “get through” the season. And really, who can blame them?

But there is so much more magic available at this time of year, if you allow yourself to receive it.

This article offers practical steps to help you slow down, reflect on the past and release whatever no longer serves you.

And in so doing, set yourself up for 2017 to truly be your best year yet!

The gift of the Winter Solstice

The Winter Solstice is the shortest day of the year. With the least amount of sunlight of any day, it’s the depth of winter.

On the surface, the world looks cold and barren. But embedded in that deep wintry darkness is the promise that the Light shall soon return.

The secret is to recognize the gift of the darkness & the cold.

How to take advantage of the Solstice

First, you must simply acknowledge the idea of cycles – that summer requires winter, that new growth requires death of the old …

… and that any future accomplishments require quiet reflection on your past accomplishments (and failures).

You must accept that to accomplish more, you can’t just keep pushing. Instead, you sometimes have to stop and “do nothing” for a while.

Once you’ve shifted into this mindset you’re ready to follow the steps below.

If you’re having a hard time shifting into this mindset of slowing down, read Is Constant Striving Really the Way to Be More Productive?

Step One: Rest

In order to fully receive the magic of the season, you have to make space for it. This doesn’t mean carving out a two-hour window on a jam-packed calendar called, “Set Goals for 2017.”

No. Taking an aggressively goal-oriented approach like that only adds to your stress.

Instead, gently brush aside all the mental & literal to-do lists, assuring yourself that the world won’t end if you slow down for a week, and allow yourself to notice the spaciousness that emerges in their place.

What you’re going for is a slower pace for a few days. A mental and emotional unwinding, that allows you to simply BE, rather than your constant DOING.

It also literally means get some rest. Sleep in. Take a nap.

I noticed a long time ago that whenever I’m feeling sleepy, I’m much less capable of feeling positive and optimistic. No good for effective visioning.

So seriously – catch up on your sleep!

Step Two: Reflect

Now that you’ve got some space in your day and your week, allow it to be given over to quiet contemplation.

After sleeping in, stroll over to your favorite chair with your bunny slippers and a mug of something delicious.

And then, just sit quietly for a while.

Gaze out into space. Watch your cat have a bath. Admire the neighbors’ holiday decorations. Sip from your mug, and allow your thoughts to wander.

Do this for at least 15 minutes.

Once you’ve sat quietly for 15 minutes, you might decide it feels so delicious you’re just going to keep doing it!

But if you’re antsy to be more “productive,” find something to write with and ask yourself these questions:

  1. What happened this year? The first step to changing something is to measure it. So before you can do anything else, you have to collect some data. You might decide to jog your memory by looking through your appointment calendar or your journal.
  2. What was good about what happened? This is a crucial step. By focusing first on the positive, you set the tone for the entire exercise to be uplifting and constructive.
  3. What was surprising? This is another important step, because it helps you to let go of control. As long as you’re clinging to the illusion that you’re in complete control of everything that happens, there’s no room for magic.

As you’re asking yourself these questions, you’ll naturally begin to formulate “goals” – ideas of how you’d like next year to be different than this past year was. Jot those ideas down – but refrain from turning them into carefully crafted goals or intentions just yet.

Step Three: Release

Now that you’ve reflected on your year, it’s time to let go of all that which you don’t want to carry forward with you into next year.

The most powerful way of truly releasing the past is to be grateful for it.

I know this can be hard if things showed up in your life that seemed really, really undesirable. But dig deep: what was good about it? What did you learn? What opportunities were created? In what ways did you grow?

Here’s a really good question to help you release painful experiences: how did the old experience that you’re releasing prepare you for the new experience that you’re embracing?

In other words, how were your experiences of the past an essential foundation for what you now envision for your future?

Sometimes it takes the long lens of hindsight to see the blessing in painful experiences.

The most painful experience of my life was losing my mother to cancer when I was 31 and she was just 62. Even though I still miss her 15 years later, I can see now how I couldn’t have become the person I am today without having gone through the process of losing her.

Sometimes what you’re releasing isn’t necessarily painful; it’s just old stuff you’re done with. Behaviors, habits, etc.

Still the best way to release it is to be grateful for how it helped you in the past.

Step Four: Repeat

Doing the Reflect & Release process several times is important.

Firstly, you bring your new intentions into sharper and sharper focus each time you review the review you’ve already done.

But even more importantly, when you know ahead of time that any given visioning session won’t be your only one, it allows you to relax into the process more fully.

When you tell yourself this is just a period of musing and contemplation – as opposed to a goal-setting session in which you must emerge with all your “final answers” –  it frees the creative force inside you. The part of you that some might call your intuition or your Divine knowing, while others might simply call your unconscious.

Step Five: New Intentions

New intentions are the statements of what you’re creating going forward. Unlike goals, which are specific and measurable, intentions are more like gentle reminders to keep yourself on track.

For example, one of my intentions is to speak and be heard. A goal related to that intention might be to book one new speaking engagement every month.

As part of your process for this week, you just want to focus on intentions, not goals. There are two reasons for that.

First is the fact that Mercury is Retrograde until January 8th. Therefore any new goals you set right now will be met with more than the usual amount of resistance.

Second, goals are dynamic, while intentions are fixed. To achieve a goal, you must pay careful attention to your progress, and make adjustments accordingly. But an intention shouldn’t ever waver.

During this visioning time, your objective is to crystallize your desire around where you want to go (your intention). The exact specifics of how you’ll get there (goals) are details to be worked out later.

Another way of thinking about it is that a goal is the part of the process you intend to control; while your intention allows for magic to happen.

More Help

If you’re a world-class procrastinator who never accomplishes any of the goals you set, your problem may actually be a Visibility Wound™. You can take the quiz here to find out if you have one.

To get help with setting realistic goals and then actually accomplishing them, you might consider checking out my home study program, Don’t Get Stuck Again. Just $147.

 

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