As the end of 2016 draws nigh and we approach a new year I want to connect with you all and wish you a joyful and easy transition from the year soon to be called old to the new year arriving.

At such markers in time it can be helpful to take some time out of the busyness of the season and draw inwards to reflect on the year ending and begin to consider hopes and dreams for the one beginning. If this appeals you can support the process by asking yourself these questions:

What’s been the story of my life in 2016? And the story of my career or business? How did the story start in January 2016? How is it ending in December 2016? What has given me life in this story? What has diminished or constrained me? What have I learned? What have I transformed? Who am I becoming through the living of this story? Which elements do I wish to carry forward and craft into the story of 2017? Which will I release and leave behind?

Take your time with these questions. They’re not to be rushed or ticked off the to-do list. Ponder on them when you have space. Maybe in the bath or on a morning walk. Or mull them over on your daily commute if you’re working and on public transport. Journal about them. Give your responses life and room to breathe. If art is your thing, draw or paint your story. Write a poem about it. Whatever it takes to allow you to truly connect to your experience of this year and identify the threads to let go and those you wish to carry forward.

And don’t feel any pressure to have all those new year resolutions crafted and sorted and maybe even already acted on! We live in fast and impatient times. Be counter cultural and slow down if you wish. Give yourself permission to enjoy this time of “in-between”. There is a stillness about it if you pause and listen. There is insight and possibility. Savour it. Honour the story of the fading year and thank it for its experiences and learnings, whether they be difficult and gladly bid farewell or whether they be joyful and much desired.

As the threads of the story of your 2017 start to show themselves welcome them with love. Ask them to wait a while as you let go of the old. Soon enough you will be in the full energy of this year arriving, and the threads you are noticing can come into sharp focus as you weave another beautiful story and create a new beginning.

And if you think your story doesn’t matter in the context of the seismic shifts going on in the world please think again. Your story is part of the whole. It matters because you matter. Your story makes a difference.