In this post, I look at rituals to close out 2017 and rituals to welcome in 2018. Rest assured that even though we’re already in the new year, it’s not too late to close out last year.
Happy new year! This is a powerful 11/2 year in the 9-year cycle. Building on the foundations of the Number 1, “Year of New Beginnings” in 2017, this magical year is a also a Master Year.
Numerologically, a Number 2 year is about partnerships and balance. While last year was about setting foundations and forging a path for the nine years ahead of us, this year is about balancing the choices that will be presented to us. Everything has a counterpart.
This might include balancing your work and personal life, balancing your needs in a relationship or friendship with the other person’s, choosing this OR that rather than having both (at the same time). It will be a year of compromises and choices.
One of the other opportunities in a Number 2 year is that of collaborating with other and building relationships. This may include new friendships, associations with colleagues or business partners, or meeting a romantic partner. It can also be about deepening the relationships you already have.
The 11 energy of 2018 amplifies the 2 energy, taking the level of partnerships to the next level – indicating that the relationship may actually be with large groups of people; taking your message to the world, and stepping up to your life’s purpose.
Cosmic Guide Elizabeth Peru is calling this the “Year of World Service” and explains more in this video.
Rituals to close out 2017
I always find the holiday break a great opportunity to close out the old year. If we can review what happened throughout the year that has just passed, we can take the lessons and release anything that no longer serves us. We don’t need to be carrying last year’s murky stuff into 2018!
I particularly loved this article by the ABC, discussing why forgiveness is the most important gift to give yourself .
The article acknowledges that it can be easy to bash ourselves up about not meeting our own high standards, and suggests we try to look at the year (and ourselves) with a healthy dose of self-compassion.
“What self-compassion does is make it OK to fail,” says Dr Neff, an Associate Professor in Human Development and Culture at the University of Texas at Austin in the ABC article. “And that’s not easy in our success-driven society.”
The article points out that self-compassion doesn’t come easily for many of us, especially women, who can often be more focussed on caring for others’ needs.
Dr Neff says it can feel selfish to care for yourself and some of us feel they almost need permission to be self-supportive. “But if you show self-compassion, you are much less likely to burn out and you will have more energy and resources to [help] others as well as yourself.”
The article then suggests to reflect on these questions about 2017, through the lens of self-compassion:
- What accomplishments am I most proud of?
- What was my biggest success and why did it make me happy?
- What were my biggest disappointments?
- What would I tell someone who had a similar experience?
- What did I learn about myself in 2017?
- What behaviours or habits do I want to leave in 2017?
- What behaviours or habits do I want to take into 2018?
These questions prompted a great discussion between my partner and I, and flowed easily into what we wanted 2018 to look like.
You could do the exercise with your family or friends to get a better understanding of what makes them tick, and support each other going into the new year. And don’t forget to take self-compassion with you into 2018 too!
50 things to be grateful for
Practicing gratitude is one of the most powerful tools available to us. I have been doing a daily gratitude practice for the last couple of years, and I find it instills such a sense of peace and joy in me, that it’s getting easier to make a daily habit.
The end of the year is a chance to reflect once again, on everything that’s good in your life – the people, situations, opportunities and whatever else came into your life that you’re thankful for.
When you show gratitude for what you already have in your life, more of the same flows in!
50 Brags is another favourite end-of-year ritual, which I started doing last year, as a result of a blog post by my money mindset mentor, Denise Duffield-Thomas. The full post goes into more detail about her end-of-year rituals, but 50 Brags is basically where you take some time to write a list of at least 50 things you’re proud of from 2017.
It’s a really fun exercise – although some people can find it challenging! It forces you to focus on the good stuff that happened in your life. We all know that life can get busy, so it’s important to recognise the things you actually made happen and that you were proud of.
It always amazes me how much shite we can accumulate! I’ve been on the decluttering bandwagon for a couple of years now, but clutter still creeps in – so I use the holiday to break to evict anything broken beyond repair, out of date, or no longer of use to me. I donate a bunch of stuff to op shops and try to find a place for everything.
If you’re interested in decluttering and haven’t yet read The Life Changing Magic of Tidying by Marie Kondo, check it out. Decluttering is another way of clearing old energy and making way for the new.
Rituals to welcome in 2018
In order to create the life of your dreams, starting with an amazing year, I feel there needs to be some sort of general vision of how you want your life to look, and then goals and intentions that lead you towards living that life.
I’ve never been much of a “let life happen to me” kinda person – I much prefer to drive my life (as much as is in my control), and even if things don’t turn out exactly as I envisage, I like to at least start the year with goals that support the bigger picture of my life. And they’re not even resolutions so much, as things I want to see, do and create, people I want to see more of, and projects for my business etc.
Setting goals and intentions
I tend to try different yearly processes and planners each year. Last year I worked with Leonie Dawson’s Shining Year Planner, and I enjoyed the various exercises the workbooks took me through.
The year before that, I worked through Danielle La Porte’s Desire Map process and planner, which I really enjoyed but didn’t stick to particularly well. The audio book of the Desire Map is awesome and well worth a listen at any time of the year, but I found the planner too small to fit all my writing and musings, and ended up using separate gratitude and writing journals.
This year, I’m working to a list of written goals that cover each area of my life, and one journal to capture everything. Yup! I’m keeping it simple!
Research suggests that only 1% of people write down their goals and regularly review them. This 1% is amongst the highest achievers – so do yourself a favour and write your goals down, and put them somewhere where you’ll see them everyday!
Do a 12-month oracle card reading for yourself
You can also use any oracle deck that you love working with, and create a 12-month reading for yourself.
When you do the reading, make sure you’re in a distraction-free space, set your intention to choose cards that can provide the most appropriate guidance for each month, and then start to choose the cards. You could say out loud before you choose each month’s card, “Universe, please provide the card that will provide the most relevant guidance for me for <<insert month>>”. And then just trust that it will be the perfect card.
This is a photo of my 2018 personal reading, using the Crystal Oracle Mandala cards by Alana Fairchild. I used this deck throughout much of the last two years, and the cards always resonate deeply with me.
I also twinned the cards with the corresponding crystal for the deck, and they will become my ally during the corresponding month. I photographed the entire reading, and then the meaning of each card and copied it into my Google Calendar on the first day of each month, to ensure I see it when I need to.
If you would like help with a 12-month reading, feel free to book one of my Life Overview Readings and I can do a card-a month reading for you.
Choose a theme word for the year
Choosing theme words isn’t a new concept at all, but 2017 was the first time I committed to a word for the year. My word was LOVE and I had the most amazing experiences as a result of declaring 2017 the year of love – not the least of which was meeting a wonderful new partner!
I’ve seen people choose words like FEARLESS, GROWTH, CREATE, CREATIVITY, PASSION, ACTION, CONFIDENCE, THRIVE, SOAR and others. It doesn’t really matter what the word is, as long as it inspires YOU!
A theme word can become your guiding beacon when you face tough decisions, tricky situations or simply don’t know which step to take next. If situations like those arise, you can use your theme word to ask, “If I were to move towards the path of <<YOUR THEME WORD>> what would be the next logical step? (OR, how would I act? OR What would I need to do?). Get the picture at how it helps to guide you to your ultimate outcome of living that word?
I’d love to know what rituals you use to welcome in the new year. And however you do it, I hope 2018 is awesome for you!