So here we are, the final run to the New Year. December will finish, along with 2016, as we head into 2017. Such an arbitrary divide but one nonetheless. Somehow it offers to us a dividing point between the old and the new. A chance for reflection among the lull in normal routines.
I have now been writing this monthly gratitude journal for a full year. What originally started 15 months ago as a weekly record with a photographic cue, shifted a year ago to a more general focus, although the photographic element remained. I found weekly to be too big a commitment but doing it monthly has felt like it hasn’t had enough momentum at times.
I am in general a private person (blogging is the exception to the rule). Gratitude posts are a funny thing, and I often wonder whether they are really something people like to read. But my posts usually fit into the opinion or personal insight type category so I suppose they must have appeal to the (few) people who read my blog.
And so I wondered if I should continue to write these posts. But I realise that they help define me in a sense as well as providing the impetus for reflecting. The gratitude posts have been my blogging constant through a tricky emotional year for me. I write my posts for me as well as those who wish to read them. I will be continuing them.
It hasn’t been a personal ‘annus horribilis’, but this year I ended the process of counselling that had been my support and sounding board for the last four years. On one hand I celebrated it. But it was also a big step to be left ‘alone’ to deal with my emotions. I survived.
I have been able to find the positives in the difficult things. Lessons I have learned from doing too much. Allowances I have made for myself when the going gets tough. Reflection I have done when things don’t go to plan.
My word for the year was GOAL. At the start of 2016 I thought it was about driving forwards and achieving them. But as I close the year out whilst goals have been a key part of my year, that wasn’t quite the outcome. It wasn’t about scoring a goal as much as finding the goal posts and making sure they weren’t going to fall over.
So much of the year was unexpected (I think a feeling shared by many). Many parts of my life have been ignored or disrupted. My word for 2017 is CHANGE. It is a constant in our lives (oh the irony). And yet I know that the next year will bring particular change challenges for me. I hope to deal with change better than before.
I am grateful for 2016 being an insightful year, full of reflection and awareness, and I am looking forward to the possibilities of 2017, with total recognition that it may not turn out like I imagine!