The beginning of the year is full of excitement and ambition. You have renewed energy to tackle your goals, whatever they may be. It’s a reset, a fresh start to move forward from the previous year. It is also a time of reflection because you get to think about what you did last year and how you can improve this year. Part of this process is letting go of what doesn’t work for you and creating a space for growth and opportunity.
It’s not always easy to realize thoughts, feelings, or behaviors that hold you back. These negative patterns can cause you to self-sabotage and prevent you from reaching your goals. You don’t have to be a self-help guru to take back control of your life! A handful of rituals and routines can help nourish your mind, body, and spirit so that you can welcome the new year. Turn the page and start writing the next chapter of your life in a more empowered state because you can do it!
Declutter Your Space
Out with the old and in with the new! Researchers note that inhabiting a cluttered space negatively impacts your mental health.This contributes to higher levels of stress and anxiety because breathing a sigh of relief proves difficult if you know that your entire house is a mess. You probably know how good it feels to walk into a clean closet and actually find the things you want to find. Maybe you walk into your child’s room and finally see that toys are in their proper places. When you organize your home, you feel empowered because you accomplished something and can finally relax.
Burn Some Sage
Get the good vibes going and positive energy flowing by burning some sage once you declutter your space. For millennia, people have used sage to open or close a ritual and cleanse the air by increasing that space’s vibration. The antimicrobial and antibacterial properties of sage help to clean the area, and research suggests that the aroma alleviates stress and boosts overall mood. Just like burning incense, burning sage can help you both clear your head and cleanse your space. It’s a great ritual to begin the year anew.
Write Down Your Reflections
If the beginning of the year is about cleansing, it is helpful to write down what you want to cleanse from your mind and body. Try to identify the source(s) of your struggles from the past year, for example, a toxic relationship or bad habit. It may feel uncomfortable to tap into this darker energy because intense feelings may arise. Writing all of this down is a way of purging your mind, and the beauty is that there is no right or wrong way to do this. Allow your pen to flow and don’t think about structure as you release onto the page. This ritual should help your emotions flow out in a fluid stream of consciousness. Once you finish writing, you can do a bonus ritual, during which you burn that paper in a safe receptacle and environment.
Wash Away The Previous Year, Literally
There’s nothing like a soothing bath after a long hard day. Now imagine what it feels like to take this soothing bath after a hard year! Add some Epsom salt, essential oils, or other things that help promote relaxation or stress reduction. We recommend eucalyptus essential, peppermint, lavender, or tea tree essential oils for relaxing aromatherapy addition to your bath soak. With essential oils, a little goes a long way, so don’t add too many drops!
Meditate And Let Go
Recently, there is a lot more buzz surrounding meditation, probably because people need it now more than ever. Finding a moment of zen is very rare, which is why intentionally carving out time to meditate can benefit your mental and physical health. For this final ritual, find a quiet, relaxing space and light some candles or burn incense. You can even play some soothing music if you don’t enjoy the quiet.
Take a seated position, or lie down, and close your eyes once you are comfortable. Take five to 10 deep breaths to center yourself, breathing in through your nose and out of your mouth. Direct your attention to areas of tension in the body. Imagine a soothing ray of light shining on those areas, filling them with warmth to cleanse the stress away. Take 10 deep breaths and then try to identify any negative thoughts or emotions. You may notice grief, anxiety, or fear surfacing in your quiet mind. Welcome the emotions and then let them go with every exhale. Continue inhaling and exhaling until you don’t feel that these feelings or emotions are weighing you down anymore.