As another year comes to a close; I look forward to new beginnings, new opportunities, new friendships and setting new intentions for the year ahead.

Each December I love to spend a day simply reflecting, reminiscing about my favorite moments by taking the time to appreciate all the little + big things that were a part of my life in the past year. I use this time to also draw some conclusions about what things make me happy and what things don’t.

A year in review can be a valuable exercise to take note of your accomplishments, expeditions and experiences that stand out, making the year memorable. Not all will be a WIN or planned, but like it or not they are all important. Every experience, encounter and choice seeks to serve us, to teach us and help us grow. It’s an opportunity to inhale all the good shit, plus exhale or release the not so good (BS)! A chance to sit in gratitude, to forgive, let go, close the book and start a New Year + new chapter.

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Here’s my year in review for 2016 Q& A style;

What was an unexpected joy or gift received this past year?

Joy ~ Connection with myself and with new kindred spirits.

Being in the presence of truly gifted women and holding space for those being called to lead.

Gift(s) ~ Acceptance

A beautiful salt lamp and amethyst pendulum from former clients turned friends.

What was an unexpected obstacle or single most challenging thing that happened?

Just one LOL…three biggies come to mind;

1. Two steps forward and one step back has been my repeated story over the past year. Why? Because every time I would make grand old plans to do something, such as; an event, retreat or biz offering…bam I’d shrink, feel guilty and convince myself this isn’t what I should be doing right now. Then a little fairy would show up with a message telling me my dad just took a turn for the worst and may not make it much longer. Re-affirming what I already knew, this year was supposed to be all about family and self-care. This past year I have planned events, cancelled events and refunded more clients than I can count. Why? FEAR of the unknown….+ my heart just wasn’t in it.

I’ve let people down, including myself. On the flip side, I’ve learned to listen more to my own needs and have become pretty dam good at saying NO to things that in the past, I would have said YES to. I now honor soul alignment and inner peace versus people pleasing and outside attainment.

Learning in the fall of 2015 that my father had terminal cancer has been one of the hardest things I’ve dealt with and I know that 2017 will be a year of grieving + releasing and more change.

2. Received less $$$ then expected for my home renovation rebate. (This meant incurring quite a bit of debt and delaying some other big plans.) Lesson: As my father taught me; don’t spend $$$ before you have it, in other words, practice contentment, patience and be a minimalist… good things come to those who work hard and wait right? Well waiting isn’t something I have ever been great at. 2017 will be less about shiney external objects for sure and more about inner enlightenment.

3. Big disappointment….an investment gone badly, one of those WTF moments for sure. On the flip side just when I thought my big dream and vision went south, the universe showed me it has bigger plans for me and a new opportunity came knocking. Lesson, our best laid plans never turn out exactly as we thought they would. Usually in the end they turn out even better. I’m going into the New Year with complete faith that everything happens as it should.

What are your top words to describe this past year?

Change, Awaken, Inspire, Connect

What things did you create in 2016?

Looking back this is what comes to mind;

  1. I created my sanctuary (my home) which truly reflects who I am and all that I love.
  2. I created space for my soul to dwell in.
  3. I created more connections both personally and professionally.
  4. I created a daily practice of going within and becoming mindful.
  5. I created more time in my schedule to do what makes me happy.
  6. I created systems and refined my definition of success.
  7. I created some plans that didn’t pan out and some yet to be executed.
  8. I created and redeveloped my signature biz program.
  9. I created and gave six new speeches, two internationally and four local.
  10. I created and hosted an event at my home.
  11. I created and launched three webinars.
  12. I created the outline for my book.
  13. I created my blog.
  14. I created a new bucket list.
  15. I created a new mission, vision for myself, my business and my future.

What was your biggest personal change from January to December of this past year?

I moved from the city (little town of Bowmanville) to the country (smaller town of Roseneath)

 What or who are you most thankful for?

I am thankful to be able to share my gifts with the world. I am thankful for life itself and for my family. I am thankful to get another opportunity to spend another Christmas with my whole family, to celebrate my dad’s 71st birthday on Christmas Eve.

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What was your favorite compliment you received this past year?

You have beautiful energy and are truly gifted at inspiring others to speak their truth.

What did you think about or dream about the most?

I often thought and pondered the very existence of life itself. Oddly enough I often dreamt about despair and loss of all kinds. I also dreamt about making a difference, building a retreat centre, helping women and youth in need.

What activities made you lose track of time? What little things did you enjoy doing most during your day to day life?

Doing projects + decorating the new house with my man Dan, working in the garden, playing with my pups, writing, creating, dreaming, entertaining with friends and jamming + strategizing with clients.

In what ways did you grow and what new habits did you cultivate?

I think this year I really learned that I don’t need anyone’s approval. I learned to be unapologetically me, to show up with grace and love or not at all. To really tune into my body and the importance of honoring my needs. I developed the habit of mindfulness, getting quiet, going within and taking a pause. I cultivated the power of focus and by fall was able to be in flow.  I learned how to truly surrender and I have a completely different perspective on life and love.

What worries turned out to be completely unnecessary?

My anxiety and fear of travelling the long distance to India and not making it home to my family. Plane crash and even worse my dad passing while I was a million miles away.

What was your favorite place you visited in 2016?

India…Jaipur especially. The natural beauty that surrounds this place is magical. From the historical monuments, amazing architecture, craftsmanship, vibrant textiles, beautiful sarees, scents of spices and street foods + wonderful gracious people;  I fell in love with a new way of being and created space for my soul to rest in. I became more curious about Ayurveda and I’m committed to deepening my studies in 2017.

What major goal did you lay the foundation for?

My main theme and chosen word for 2016 was Connection. My goal was to become more connected to myself, to my partner and to truly uncover what makes me happy. The desire to expand my capacity to love + the need to create space kept showing up. I believe I now know what creating space truly means. This year, I have set the groundwork for 2017 to be a year of flow + expansion.

What was the biggest thing you learned this year?

We do not see the world the way it is…we see the world the way we are.

The truth is always there.

What was your most memorable moment of 2016?

My trip to India. Trust me when I say if any part of your soul is blocked or unable to find its way home, its certain being in India will both break you open and help you find your way home. (More on this in a future blog)

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Goodbye 2016…..It’s time to get excited for 2017!!

I challenge you to spend some time in reflection. Use my questions or come up with your own. Are you excited to create some big magic in 2017? Do you already have some ideas and intentions set for things you want to achieve? Looking back at your past year will also help to ensure that your goals for next year are truly in line with your priorities and values.

Although I don’t believe in resolutions, I love to DREAM BIG, PLAN, CREATE and CONQUER with intention!

(More on this in my next blog “Do Less with More Focus”)

Wishing you an abundance of joy over the holiday season!