As some of you may have noticed, people have started posting memes about how there are only [insert number of days] left in 2019, so you are “running out of time” to make the year count. The sudden sense of urgency seems a little misplaced—if your New Year’s resolutions fizzled out in February, there’s no need to make a last-minute salvage attempt—but it is never a bad idea to reserve some end of year time for reflection and intentionality. Why not take advantage of the scientifically-validated power of rituals to add meaning, mark transitions, and make us feel more grounded and in control?
While many rituals are culturally prescribed, you have the power to create your own or adopt someone else’s if they resonate with you. You don’t have to create an extensive ritual routine spanning decades, but I invite you to grab a pen and paper, or a cup of tea, and devote a moment to the conscious consideration of end of year rituals.
For inspiration, I offer you my favorite end of year rituals. In the final days of December, I like to:
These rituals are about reflection (one of the most powerful tools for growth and development), and identifying what I want more or less of in my life (my own version of goal setting). Rituals help me let the past go, accept what is right now, and clear space for what is yet to come. For example, burning journals is like clearing out junk in the garage: It not only clears out physical space in my house, but it also clears out mental and heart space. My rituals leave me feeling lighter and more open.
I’m adding two new practices to my process this year. They are:
What are some of your favorite end of year rituals and go-to tools? Will you be adding or subtracting any practices from your end of year process? If so, let me know in the comments.