After a quiet and reflective Christmas and new-year period I’d like to share some of my thoughts about coming into the new year that I hope you will find useful, inspiring and a reminder of how incredibly powerful you are.
We’re all familiar with the usual stuff that comes up around this time of the year – “new years resolutions,” the influx of self-improvement programs getting shoved in our faces, lemon detoxes, ‘new year, new you…” I’ve had numerous conversations with friends and family leading up to new years, all with a similar theme of everyone wanting to be “just a little bit better this year/achieve just a bit more”… when I have asked what exactly they meant by these statements and if they could give me an example, it was usually answered ambiguously without being able to pin-point exactly what they meant, or things they wanted to do better/parts of themselves they wanted to improve.
It appeared to be more of a general feeling of Lack, Inadequacy & Guilt
Can you relate to this?
This ego-based feeling of lack and inadequacy is a very widespread and normalised way of thinking and feeling about ourselves in our society. To be truly powerful, conscious, fulfilled and inspired, we need to shift our perspective to a level of consciousness that does not come from an inner feeling of lack and inadequacy.
Whether you have chosen to make resolutions, start a new diet, vow to never eat carbs/sugar/gluten/non-paleo/high-fructose/processed foods (you get what I mean), join the gym, sign up to a detox program – ask yourself THIS question?:
Am I making the choice to _______________ out of fear and lack-based beliefs about myself?
Am I looking at this through the lens of fear, lack and inadequacy?
Don’t feel bad if you predominantly answer yes – considering the world we live in, we’re basically conditioned to believe that we’re never good enough, never attractive enough, never perfect enough, constantly need external validation, to suppress ‘negative’ feelings, that we need to constantly be improving ourselves…I could go on.
From my perspective, what’s crucial to understand is that if you go into the new year with resolutions and goals which are aligned with this mindset, conscious or unconscious, you are inevitably setting yourself up for the perpetual cycle of continuing to feel inadequate, guilty and ashamed of yourself, particularly if you do not achieve or follow through with whatever expectations you have set up.
You are making these choices out of fear, that are not aligned with your true self.
Now, I am not denying the importance and health benefits of physical exercise and working out, but I find it incredibly intriguing that as a collective we generally don’t place the same importance and dedication to practises of the mind and spirit. We continue to learn and understand more and more about the fields of psychoneuroimmunology, the mind-body connection, the power of practises such as gratitude, mindfulness, devotion, meditation, connection…but struggle to consistently apply such practises.
I wonder how differently your year and your entire LIFE could pan out if you dedicated yourself to a consistent daily practise of reminding yourself of your true, inherent nature:
- You are worthy of love and belonging
- You are worthy of self-love
- You matter
- You are complete, whole and perfect just as you are. You do not need to be ‘fixed’
- You are limitless
- You are unique
- You are a dynamic, fluid being who is all powerful and co-creates your reality
- You are joyful
- You are ’causelessly’ happy and appreciative, regardless of something you are experiencing being ‘good or bad’
Look around you – would you consider anyone in your life, or yourself, as a person who projects these states of being? In a world that is so constantly distracted, disengaged, consuming, numbing, comparing themselves to others (hello social media), it’s no surprise that the majority of people do not live in this kind of state.
Since experiencing such obvious shifts in the quality of my own health, relationships and mindset, this is something I have become SO passionate about not only for my own growth, but because as a clinical naturopath I am always focused on making sure I have uncovered and addressed all of the multiple underlying causes of illness.
Whilst there are physical elements that are relevant and must be addressed, e.g. deficiencies, inflammation, chemical imbalances, there are always underlying emotional, mental, spiritual factors and mindsets that are not conducive to healing or reflective of your true nature that are major drivers of ill health, anxiety, depression, and a general feeling of being unwell.
Being ‘holistic’ is more than just finding the right supplement, herb, trigger, point or dietary strategy – essentially, it is being able to get in touch with your deeper essence. Doing this allows you to tap into your true source of healing, and initiate transformation,
Then why don’t we make more of an effort to alleviate and address these factors?
Create a space for ourselves to explore our complete range of emotions and how to relate to them in a healthy way? To be heard in a supportive environment and given practical advice and exercises guided at shifting their mindset, consciousness, underlying belief patterns, and how to live a more present, aware, and focused life? We typically avoid this kind of work because we label it as hard, time-consuming and don’t see the value in it. But it could start as simply as reaching out for help with a practitioner who will listen to you without judgement or an agenda.
Taking responsibility for and making a conscious decision to invest in understanding ourselves, our patterns, and habits is so powerful. It allows us to develop the capacity to embark on changes and make choices that are aligned with our truth.
I would like you to take a moment to reflect on these 3 things:
- Acknowledge all the things you achieved last year! You are an incredible and powerful being who is in a constant state of change and transformation! We are so used to ignoring all of the small/big achievements and positive changes we have made, and focus all of our energy and what is missing or what we ‘didn’t achieve. This mindset is incredibly draining and will keep you stuck in the unconscious loop of feeling inadequate.
- Instead of thinking about experiences you have had in the past 12 months or are still currently going through as ‘bad/negative,’ ask yourself these questions: What can I learn about myself from this experience? What is the inherent teaching in this for my own personal growth and development as a strong, powerful and conscious being? Choosing to see our challenges in this way will take us out of the state of being a ‘victim,’ and will be conducive to our healing and personal growth. No effort is ever wasted.
- Celebrate who you are today! Moment to moment we are growing, evolving and transforming. The challenges and joys we have experienced in our lifetime have shaped the person we are today.
So, the big question is – what do you do now?
It’s easy enough to intellectualise it and write it down, but what are some of the practical tools use you can start implementing immediately to create such experiences for yourself? There are so many self-help tools, advice and generic templates out there around these topics, which is not what i wanted this article to be (I’m sure you’ve already read enough this year already).
It can take shape in many forms – morning routines, mindfulness, meditation, yoga practice, gratitude journalling, prayer, visualisation…either way, I have seen these things have the most powerful effect on people when they make the conscious effort to figure out what works for them, are given practical and sufficient advice and guidance, and when they implement it as part of a consistent, disciplined practise.
Like many things, it might be slow starting, you may lapse a few days here and there, but what is most important is your conscious decision and willingness to show up and keep trying. We need to be gently reminded of our inherent qualities – they aren’t things that we don’t already know, but we tend to forget and focus on all the tiny things we don’t have. Cultivating an intentional practice can have a huge impact on your life. Without cultivating practises in presence and awareness, the reality is that the past will show up in our present unless we process and release it.
My main intention for this article is to plant a seed in you, of being curious about your true inherent nature, and to be inspired for the new year in a different way – not from a place of inadequacy and guilt, but from a desire to make a conscious decision to live your life based on your higher self and your authentic desires and ambitions. To hopefully have ignited a fire in you to want to implement some form of these disciplines and mind-body work into your life.
I have many avenues and practical tools I can suggest and write about from personal and clinical experience, but am curious to know of any specific topics and or/resources you are particularly interested in, as well as your struggles and mental blocks in doing this kind of work. Is it time? lack of resources and guidance?
Please feel free to leave a comment below, on my facebook page, or email me if with ideas and topics, or if you would like to work more closely together.
A happy and healthy new year to you all!