For most of us, there is a “winding down” as one year draws to a close, and as a New Year begins to dawn. Part of this is spending time reflecting on the relationships, connections, and outcomes that have transpired, while looking deep within to process, sift, and sort.
This is healthy. Living with intention and focus is key to holistic success, and it is difficult to have intention without self-awareness and reflection. It is often at the Sunset of an Old Year, and at the Sunrise of a New Year that clarity speaks. “January” got its name from the Roman god Janus, who was a man with two faces. One looked backward, while the other looked forward. A New Year provides a valuable opportunity to ponder the past Year while anticipating the future Year.
That being said, I want to share a few thoughts with you as we gaze upon the Sunset of an Old Year, and into the Sunrise of a New Year. I have spent some time pondering my 2015 in gratitude and appreciation, seeking to glean what I can from the journey itself, and all I’ve experienced. This has birthed some critical moments of awareness for me, which I hope will be helpful for you. Please reflect with me on Navigating 2016 with Authenticity, Alignment, and Abundance.
Authenticity is being real, genuine, or authentic. It is about not being a copy or imitation of something or someone else, but it is about being true to who you really are. Only the truth of who you really are, when you full realize it, will set you free. It takes courage and bravery to be who you really are. We live in a world that seems to reward a lack of authenticity, and appears to honor those who are airbrushed, artificial, and manufactured. Navigating 2016 with Authenticity will involve being genuine and being real, because Authenticity starts in the heart. Authenticity is fierce and unyielding, vulnerable and transparent. Authenticity does not quit or sit quietly on the sidelines. Authenticity involves being true to yourself, true to those you love, relentless in pursuing your passions, and fearless in seizing your dreams. I love this quote from one of my heroes, Oprah Winfrey, who said it best: “I had no idea that being your authentic self could make me as rich as I’ve become. If I had, I’d have done it a lot earlier.” Navigating 2016 will require Authenticity.
Navigating 2016 will also require Alignment. The most empowering condition of all is when your aspirations and approaches line up with your attributes and actions, all working together to position you for your best life. THAT is Alignment. Alignment is arranging aspirations, approaches, attributes, and actions so that they position you for your very best life. Aspiration is what you dream about; what you want. How you pursue your aspirations is your approach. Your attributes are the unique capacities, abilities, and personality you were granted in order to achieve your aspirations. Your actions are the daily choices, habits and routines you employ in order to achieve your aspirations. When your aspirations, approaches, attributes, and actions are all lined up with one another so that they position you for your best life, you have Alignment. The truth is that when what you value and want and dream about does not match the life you are living, you have pain. Navigating 2016 will require Alignment.
Navigating 2016 will also require Abundance. Abundance is not about nicer cars, fatter bank accounts, or the accumulation of wealth for the sake of materialism. True Abundance is giving back: Having enough to meet your needs and the needs of those you love, along with capacity to impact others. In 2016, don’t look for Abundance, look to align authentically because Abundance itself is attracted to both Authenticity and Alignment. As we move into Authenticity and Alignment, Abundance flows easily.
I get the sense that Navigating 2016 will be about navigating uncertainty, ambiguity, and complexity. It seems to me that precise clarity, clear direction, and a defined path will occur in some areas, but not in others. There will be areas of your life, relationships, career, and business where the route will be clear and specific, and yet other area where there will be uncertainty, lack of clarity, and even doubt. There will be so much we cannot control in 2016, and so let’s focus on that which we can control in order to live intelligently. My hope here is to provide some anchors for your soul moving into 2016:
o Hope vs. Despair: As difficult as things may get, please remember that despair is always a choice, and so is hope.
o Faith vs. Fear: The only thing that stands between you and your dreams is fear, and yet the one critical element in fulfilling your dreams is faith. Feed your faith and not your fears.
o Spirituality vs. Materialism: Spirituality is not about a building, a habit, or a practice. It is a way of being, and a way of embracing a life based on reverence and values.
o Right vs. Wrong: Resist the temptation to classify, categorize, and in doing so, to judge.
o Genuineness vs. Comparison: In 2016, be who you are. Look within to discover who you are, to love who you are, and to honor who you are. Pain comes to those who constantly deny themselves the freedom to be who they really are.
o Clarity vs. Ambiguity: In 2016, the path will not always be clear. You may need to steer through ambiguity and uncertainty. Don’t lose your sense of purpose in these moments.
o Possibility vs. Limitation: For all of us, 2016 holds unique difficulties we have not yet imagined. Each difficulty is an opportunity to embrace possibility and opportunity, because though pain is mandatory, misery is always optional.
o Focus vs. Distraction: Focus is more important than either talent or intelligence. An old proverb tells us that if we chase two rabbits, both will escape. You might be hungry for two rabbits, and may really believe that you need both, but you don’t. Get focused, stay focused, and you will realize the object of your focus. Your focus determines your reality.
Happy 2016! 2016 will be all about Authenticity, Alignment, and Abundance, and Navigating 2016 will be all about navigating with Authenticity, Alignment, and Abundance. In 2016, don’t look for Abundance, look to align authentically because Abundance itself is attracted to both Authenticity and Alignment. As we move into Authenticity and Alignment, Abundance will flow easily.