2014 - shutterstock_148747460

Here it is, the end of 2013. As I reflect back on this year, I can hardly believe how fast it flew by! I know time goes fast and yet I am still shocked that this year is coming to it’s end. This only leaves me thinking about all the many things I still want to do and accomplish in my life.

At the end of each year I like to take inventory of how my year went. I started 2013 with a commitment to becoming my best self and truly living what I teach. My online program, Becoming Your Best, teaches people exactly how to achieve health in eight crucial areas: physical, mental, emotional, intellectual, environmental, financial, social and spiritual health. This year, Becoming Your Best was rebranded into Your Freedom Experience. I chose this new name because when we can be in balance in these eight areas, we experience a unique sense of freedom to be comfortable in our own skin no matter where we are, who we are with or what we are doing in life. This is what I call ultimate freedom, because we have come to know, like and trust ourselves. We are comfortable, happy and life comes easier when we reach our optimal health and well-being.

At the beginning of 2013, I decided to challenge myself to walk my talk and let me tell you, this has been no easy feat! At the beginning of January, I was jazzed up about my plan, I even gave up alcohol and all medications, which I am proud to say lasted all year and actually become easy to go without! When I felt stuck or exhausted in my commitment to become my best, I pushed myself to exercise and move my body, even when I really didn’t want to and the couch was calling my name!

There are just so many important things we need to do to be healthy in mind, body and spirit, it can become overwhelming. To make the process easier, I layered on a new practice to my self-care routine each week. By the time I reached week 12, I found it was really challenging to maintain all these new practices. At the end of week 12 I was burnt out, and found it incredibly taxing to find the time to fit all these things in. I realized that taking care of yourself is a full time job! Then you add family time, your actual job, socializing, taking care of your home, errands, and hobbies into the equation and it’s no wonder our lives are hectic and stressful.

By May, I decided it was too exhausting to do it all on my own, I needed a support system. I found a coach to help me stay on track, stay motivated, help me choose what should come next, help me simplify my life, to be my cheerleader, to give me a push when I needed it, and to prioritize my commitments.

Once I started working with my coach, I realized how crazy I had been to try and do all of this without one. It’s like having a teacher; would you have ever done your homework on time and to your best ability in school if you didn’t have anyone to hand it in to or review it? For the first 20-something years of our lives we had someone to report to, to turn results into, and who expected the best from us. Plus, don’t you remember that feeling of joy and relief when you saw that wonderful grade after a particularly difficult assignment? My coach really helped me stay on track and hold true to my commitment to myself. As I welcome 2014 with an open mind, I will continue to work on myself and my life to bring it into better balance, this time with a support system already in place!

I invite you to carve out some special “ME” time to reflect on the questions below. Take time to journal, create art or make a vision board that reflects what is truly important for you. After all, time is whizzing by very quickly and to feel our best, we don’t need to waste time feeling guilty or wishing we had accomplished something that is truly important for us. While spending time with yourself, think about who can help you achieve your goals and dreams in 2014.

Here are 12 questions that can help you take inventory of 2013 and prepare what is important for you in 2014:

1. What stands out the most for you over the past 12 months that you are proud of?
2. What was your greatest learning experience about yourself, your life, your work, etc.?
3. What would you like to do more of?
4. What would you like to do less of?
5. What is one thing that took you by surprise and really gave you a sense of real excitement?
6. What were your greatest health and/or mental health challenges?
7. What are you grateful for?
8. What is the one most obvious and important thing for you to change in your life?
9. What do you want to accomplish in 2014?
10. What do you need to release that no longer serves you and is holding you back so that you will be able to accomplish your goal(s) in 2014?
11. What is one simple shift that you can make to become your best self and start on your own freedom experience?
12. What are some healthy ways that you can allow yourself to both receive and give back more?

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