“Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.” Dr. Seuss
Whenever the year ends, a part of me feels sad and reminisces about the past annual events. It’s an unusual mixture of missing the old memories while anticipating what lies ahead.
Nostalgia verses anticipation
Usually there’s an excited feeling of optimism mixed with the nostalgia of what I am saying goodbye to. It’s always hardest to say goodbye to anything I believe, but it’s something which has to be done to let it all rest. Reflecting on the annual events allows the year to be categorized overall as productive or destructive, good or bad, successful or a failure.
Nostalgia is exactly that – it keeps you fixated to what you want it to be and not really what happened. The end of the year marks the end of a little more immaturity in us. Looking back can make us that little bit more wiser, helping us to avoid repeating the same mistakes.
I read my diary to look over the written statements I made with a different frame of mind exactly a year ago. This reading reminds me of what my aims had been and what my stance was at the beginning of the year. By the end of the year I always ask myself:
- Where am I now?
- Have I achieved those aims?
- If not, then why not?
- What changes can I make to get what I want next year?
I allow my thoughts to run wild. I ponder on if I want to dispose of those aims now because they may no longer be suitable to my current lifestyle, or do I need to modify them in order to achieve the best that I can.
I also consider if my desires have driven me any closer to my aims. If not, then it means I need to re-evaluate and reassess my position and start over, perhaps with a new approach. I also ask these questions:
- How have I grown overall and where am I still lacking?
- Most importantly though – what have I learned and was this learning worthwhile?
- How can I apply this learning to my future endeavours?
These reflections help to put all the bad things into perspective. I try to understand why all the bad events had to happen for me to improve and get better and grow in a way I could not have anticipated.
By the end of my reflection, I count my blessings and set new targets which are not so over challenging that they become unachievable. I then gear myself up and aim for the next dream, goal and project.
As I gear myself up, I also reassure myself and carry on – nobody around me even notices the changes I have undergone internally, perhaps neither do they care – because I am true to myself and do not change the good aspects of myself that others are drawn to.
My core values are intact whether anyone notices or not – and that is what matters to me – that I am evolving along the lines that I wish to out of choice for myself.
I then consciously choose to move on from the bad memories of the year by laying them to rest. These are my personal thoughts on the year. I am sure you have also mixed bittersweet memories overall of the year. Until my next blog, happy holidays and enjoy a wonderful new year!