One of my favourite cards in the Group Works Pattern Deck is Reflection Action Cycle – both for working with groups as well as my own personal practice.
Each New Year I pause to look back at the previous year to reflect and learn, and then dream about the coming year.
This year I used a combination of Becca Tracey’s Year in Review questions as well as Joanna Powell Colbert’s New Year’s Tarot Spread. I also chose to ‘go dark’ on social media for seven days from December 27th to January 2nd to support my reflection and dreaming time.
The highlights from my ‘looking back’ journey…
After four-plus years of juggling a full time job and my external client work I officially made the move into full time solo-preneurship. I was busy with terrific clients bringing my art of group process design to facilitate participatory gatherings and using conversation as a core process for change. I went to New York and Europe on learning journeys with some of my fellow circle-spirits, spent 10 days in the summer with my family in Alberta, sat in too many circles to count, including my two personal circles that have been so key for my personal growth. I co-launched two new offerings (Transformative Meetings Workshop and the Winter Solstice Circle Evening) and continued working with the Circle Way Initiative Council as we support the next generation of the Circle Way in the word. I finally joined Facebook and Instagram, re-did my website, visited many new-to-us local parks, and read books. My guilty pleasure this summer was reading all five Game of Thrones books in 5 weeks! Some of my favourite books of the year were Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed, The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer, Reinventing Organizations by Frederic Laloux, and Reflections on a Mountain Lake by Ani Tenzin Palmo.
I had an amazing year. Peek here for a 15 second photo-highlights video.
Looking ahead to 2015, I did some dreaming.
What do I really, really, really want? The answer came easily to me: build more connections and deepen relationships, treasure and nurture those who have connected with me + my writing and work, build my client work and teaching/retreat work, and deepen my relationship with my sweetie. My theme of the year is building connections.
“We are all connected; To each other, biologically. To the earth, chemically. To the rest of the universe atomically.” ― Neil deGrasse Tyson
Next I set some intentions for my health, financial health, adventures, my work, volunteering, and honed my weekly planning routine and morning/evening practices. These are more like “things I want to remember”, or items I want to bring more awareness to. The “accomplish this specific thing by this specific date” planning approach doesn’t work that well for me… instead I listen for guidance and intuition and flow from there. I keep my notes handy – put little visuals up at my desk, in my journal – and transfer any practical to-dos to my to-do app. And then I let it all rest, checking in from time to time as it feels needed.
How about you – what is your intention for the year? What are some of your juicy practices for reflection and dreaming?