Tag Archives: New Year

Who Says it’s New Year’s Day?

There’s Not Just One New Year

Who says Jan. 1 is the start of the New Year? I’m no historian, but as far as I can make out Jan. 1 was chosen more or less at random Julius Caesar, when he decided the Roman calendar needed a little updating, back in 45 BC.IMG_5615

The year never feels particularly “New” to me on the first of January, but it does feel as if the year is turning in the fall, when crops are being harvested. That’s when it’s time to celebrate the Jewish New Year, which gives me another opportunity to consider my New Year’s intentions and reflections.

But perhaps if I lived in an Asian country I’d feel ready to begin anew in February, when the Chinese New Year is celebrated.

Rather than debate the merits of the various options for a New Year’s celebration, I choose to honor as many as I can in order to support my New Year’s intentions, and I invite you to consider doing the same.

Here’s how:

  • On Jan. 1 set your intentions for the coming year.
  • During the period between Jan. 1 and Feb. 8 (the Chinese New Year) reflect on the year that just passed, and visualize what you want to move toward in the year to come.
  • On Oct. 2, the start of the Jewish New Year, renew the intentions that you set on Jan. 1. The Jewish New Year is also a time to seek forgiveness for any wrongs you’ve committed, so you might also take this time to forgive yourself for ways you’ve fallen short of living up to your New Year’s intentions. Then gently encourage yourself to try, try again.

No need to stop here…learn about New Year’s celebrations and traditions in other cultures, and see if you find inspiration for supporting your own quest to renew yourself again and again, all year long.

I am wishing you a Joy-Filled New Year. May you Renew, Refresh, and Recommit to being the best you can be.

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Here at AllTheSnoozeThat’sFitToPrint we’re resolving to do New Year’s Resolutions differently. Today’s post is the final installment in a week-long series on mindful ways of creating New Year’s Resolutions that work.

You can read the first post when you click here. Then just follow along.

Joy CoverAnd now for a word from our sponsor:

Bring more JOY into your life in 2016. My new book helps lead the way!

 

 

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Resolve to Remind Yourself

What is it about New Year’s resolutions that makes them so easy to forget? Let’s face it, making resolutions is easy. Sticking to them–not so much. Here are some tips to help support you in succeeding at keeping your New Year’s intentions:

  • Touch in. Keep a touchstone (an object to remind you of your intention) close at hand in a pocket or pocketbook. Each time you see it, remind yourself of your New Year’s intention.
  • Home in. Take a picture of your touchstone, or of some other image that reminds you of your intention, and make iIMG_1020t the Home Screen Image  on your smart phone, tablet, or computer.
  • Be alarming. Add a label to your alarms and alerts on your smart phone or other devices that reminds you of your intention. So, rather than having an alarm that says “Wake Up” your label might read, “Wake Up to Joy,” to remind you of your intention to live joyfully.
  • Drop anchor. Another good way to stick to your resolution is to anchor your intention to something you do every day. For example, each time you brush your teeth, focus on lovingkindness, if that is your intention. Or meditate for each morning while your coffee is brewing, if you are aiming to bring more mindfulness into your year.

Get creative and have fun finding different ways to build Resolution Reminders into your day.

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Here at AllTheSnoozeThat’sFitToPrint we’re resolving to do New Year’s Resolutions differently. Today’s post is part of a week-long series on mindful ways of creating New Year’s Resolutions that work. You can read the first post when you click here. Then follow along.

Joy CoverAnd now for a word from our sponsor:

Bring more JOY into your life in 2016. My new book helps lead the way!

 

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Making New Year’s Resolutions…40 Days at a Time

A Year is a Long Time

364 days (365 for 2016, which is a leap year) is a long time for sticking to a new habit or behavior. So rather than make a New Year’sIMG_1016Resolution for an entire year, try committing to 40 days at a time, instead.

Why 40 days? Studies show that it takes about that long to establish a habit. It’s also a long enough time to create a healthy challenge, but not so long that it’s unsustainable. Still, if 40 days seems like too long, try committing to your resolution for 21 days at a time, instead.

Here are some tips for making those resolutions stick one day (or 40) at a time:

  • Be specific. Rather than say, “I want to be more mindful,” try: “In order to be more mindful I’ll meditate for 12 minutes a day for 40 days.” If you want to be more grateful, resolve to make a gratitude list containing 10 items every evening before bed for 40 days.
  • Choose a touchstone. A touchstone is an object, such as a feather, shell, stone, coin, or piece of jewelry, that will remind you of your commitment. Your touchstone should also be small enough to carry in a pocket or purse, to keep your reminder close at hand for the duration of your 40-day commitment.
  • Aim for progress, not perfection. Be gentle with yourself. If you forget you resolution for a day or two, simply return to, and re-commit, as soon as you remember.
  • Celebrate. Mark the conclusion of your 40-day commitment on your calendar. On Day 40 celebrate your success, and repeat the process for the next 40 days.

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Here at AllTheSnoozeThat’sFitToPrint we’re resolving to do New Year’s Resolutions differently. Today’s post is part of a week-long series on mindful ways of creating New Year’s Resolutions that work. You can read the first post when you click here. Then follow along.

Joy CoverAnd now for a word from our sponsor:

Bring more JOY into your life in 2016. My new book helps lead the way!

 

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A New Year’s Reducing Plan

Perhaps in the wake of the season of gift giving and receiving, you’re feeling like you’ve consumed too much: Too much food and drink, as well having bought too much and accumulated too many gifts. In these quiet days we have an opportunity to take stock, value what we have and let go of what no longer serves us.

New Year's is the perfect time to do some mental housecleaning.

New Year’s is the perfect time to do some mental housecleaning.

Looking around our houses this time of year, with rooms cluttered with gifts, cards, and baskets of cookies and sweets, one thing is clear: It’s easier to acquire than to let go. But just as our shelves, table tops, closets, and drawers fill up with dusty old tchotchkes and worn out clothes that no longer fit us, so too can our minds and hearts get cluttered with old stories and beliefs that are taking up space without serving any useful purpose.

As we approach 2016, take a mental inventory. List 3 (intangible) things you want to let go of. Perhaps there’s a belief that is far past its sell-by date; perhaps you’ve collected some resentments, or old myths you’ve created about your life that no longer bring you closer to the truth of who you are capable of becoming.

As you clean up your house this week, discarding bags of wrapping paper, sweeping up pine needles that have fallen around the Christmas tree, or even doing daily chores such as washing dishes and taking the trash to the curb–think about the habits of worry or negativity, or the old beliefs you are going to let go of as 2015 draws to a close.

As what no longer serves you falls away, you can make room in your heart and mind for new possibilities and fresh starts.

ZZzzZZzzZZ

Here at AllTheSnoozeThat’sFitToPrint we’re resolving to do New Year’s Resolutions differently. Today’s post is part of a week-long series on mindful ways of creating New Year’s Resolutions that work. You can read the first post when you click here.

Joy CoverAnd now for a word from our sponsor:

Bring more JOY into your life in 2016. My new book helps lead the way!

 

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#tellyourself about the New Year

What I most need to tell myself about 2016?

2016? What does that mean? A really big number. A new page on the calendar. Is that all?

2016 is an opportunity. Just as each morning we get a chance to open our eyes anew and make another go at living our best lives, so the turning of the year, the turning of the page, is an opportunity to wake up again to the fact that this is it! This is my (this is your) one wild and precious life, as Mary Oliver says in her poem “The Summer Day.”

2016 is a new year; a new succession of months and seasons and sunsets and sunrises. For me, each one is an invitation to discover what I stand for and why I’m here.

2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 … year by year I have been moving more deeply into my commitment to living a life rooted in knowing myself more deeply and encouraging others to do the same through dreams, writing, and mindfulness. These are the three doorways I know of that lead me on an inner adventure as wild and exciting as any mountain climb or round-the-world sea voyage.

As 2015 comes to a close I see my commitments to these practices manifesting in tangible ways, which I hope to continue to build on in 2016:

  • DREAMS: My dream business, Third House Moon, in which I work with individuals and groups to help them become conscious of and connected with their nighttime dreams for inner growth and healing is taking off. I just returned from a week in the Bahamas where I taught about The Yoga of Dreams at Sivananda Yoga Retreat and Ashram, and in 2016 I will be unveiling plans to offer new opportunities to people who want to dive deeper into their understanding and knowledge of dreams and how to use them effectively to help promote health and healing on the personal and collective levels;
  • WRITING: I continue to teach writing workshops, primarily these days to teen moms and low-income women and men in adult literacy settings. I also teach writing workshops in the wider community. This fall I had two opportunities to teach “Poetic Dream” workshops, in which we used our nighttime dreams to inspire our poetry, and I hope to be able to offer more workshops on writing in 2016. In the coming year I plan to nurture my own writing as well. (I’ve got a “Crown of Sonnets” in the works. Wish me luck!)
  • MINDFULNESS: My book, “Joy in Every Moment: Mindful Exercises for Waking to the Wonders of Ordinary Life” was published last month, and in 2016 I plan to offer talks, workshops, and book signings about mindful approaches to creating a more joyful and meaningful life. Going around the country talking about Joy? Not a bad gig! (And there’s still room on my dance card if you want to bring me to your town for a workshop or event.)

So, what do I most need to tell myself about 2016? I need to tell myself that 2016 is just another morning; another ordinary extraordinary opportunity to open my eyes anew to the possibilities to be awake and aware, and to step into the world through the doorways of dreams, writing, and mindfulness.

And what about you? What are you going to #tellyourself about the coming year? Think carefully, because the words you chose lead you into the life you live. Why not make it extraordinary!

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Goodbye Rabbit, Hello Bunny

Today, January 23, begins the Chinese New Year. The Year of the Rabbit is now behind us, and the Year of the Dragon has begun.

I was born in the Year of the Rabbit, so I’m a little sad to see it end.

But lucky for me, just as the Year of the Rabbit was coming to a close, a bunny hopped into my life. I am now the proud foster parent of Honey Bunny, my daughter’s cloud-gray bunny, who I am looking after while she follows her dreams in New York City.

So, though the Year of the Rabbit has ended, my Year of the Bunny has just begun!

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Dragon

Image via Wikipedia

And what does the Year of the Dragon mean for dreamers? I consulted my sister on this one, as she lives in Japan and has put more thought than I have into the Chinese zodiac. She pointed out that the Dragon is the only mythical creature in the Chinese Zodiac. Thus, the Dragon year might be a time to celebrate imagination, and to explore our personal myths through the imagery of our dreams.

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Happy Chinese New Year to all!

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Make the most of the Year of the Dragon by getting to know your dreams! Contact me for more information about Dream Consultations through Third House Moon.

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New Years Dream Come True

Do dreams come true?

As I mentioned in a previous post, one of my New Year’s traditions is to incubate a dream for the New Year. On January 1, 2010 I woke with dreams of moon dust and pussy willows. On December 30, 2010 I walked past this tree on the lawn of the Newport Art Museum …

Pussy Willows 2010: First the dream, then the manifestation.

And now my year feels like it has come full circle, from dream to reality.

If I come across a handful of moon dust before day is done I’ll really be impressed.

What were your New Years’ dreams? How might they materialize in 2011?

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