With thanks to our friends at mindful.org, we’d like to share this simple practice for welcoming the New Year.
As an old year ends and a new one begins, please join us in doing this simple practice that helps us recognize this transition and honor all that has happened and all that awaits each of us.
You might want to have a few tissues or a journal handy.
This practice brings so many emotions to the surface, you might get teary and grateful and excited to be alive all at once. We hope you find it similarly powerful.
A Practice for Honoring the Transition to a New Year
- Sit comfortably, relax your body, and close your eyes.
- Slowly, gently, breathe in through your nose, and out through your mouth.
- Now, imagine that you are breathing in all of 2019 and what transpired for you, bringing the whole year into your lungs with each breath.
- Survey your memories as they come in on your breath and fill your lungs, catching glimpses of the year’s high and low moments.
- Allow yourself to feel the good, bad, disappointing, marvelous, wondrous, thanking everything that life brought to you this year.
- Feel the fullness of the year, savoring these moments of reflection.
- Let it all go. With a few deep, long exhales, let it all go.
- Experience the tides of your breath a few times, in and out, and then rest, sensing the air coming in through your nostrils and flowing out.
- Let your breath flow naturally, effortlessly.
- Next, imagine a field of snow, freshly fallen all around you, pure, expectant, inviting.
- Allow your heart to swell and your ears to attune: What is calling to you this year? Where does your heart long to go? Feel and sense deeply.
- When you are ready, let your eyes flutter open: Welcome to a new beginning.
Take some time to take note — and ideally, write down — what came up for you during your meditation. What thoughts and memories came to the surface? What feelings came up for you? What made you smile? Feel calm or nourished? Are there things you feel relieved to let go of and leave in the past?
What direction called to you in the snow? Maybe you’ll take a moment to write it down and allow the message of your heart to surface. In fact, the practice reminds us of a beautiful quote by Rumi:
“Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love.
It will not lead you astray.”