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Renewing acquaintance with yourself through reflection, resilience and renewal

frozen leaf

It can be a moment to pause and reflect on where we’ve been, where we are, and where we’d like to go.

It can also be a time when we may feel lost and uncertain of what we need or want to do next. It can be confusing to wade through the tempting offers and suggestions for a ‘happy’ life. In the media there is a plethora of hints offering the best diet, the latest look, newest technology, ways to change our behaviour… the list goes on. Of course some of this can be useful to apply to a more resilient way of being.

It’s a time I enjoy giving attention to my home, being thankful for the physical security and shelter it affords me and my family throughout the year. It’s also an annual decluttering opportunity. Over the break I took great delight in painting an old chest and creating a new look. This spurred me on to find my creativity in looking for other things to renew.

With the outer world’s challenges, large and small, we can also let it be a time to turn inward and pay attention to our inner world and notice what needs attention, perhaps towards what we have outgrown, what drains us, and notice what or who brings us vitality that helps us to nourish our passions.

Over the years I continue to be curious about what resilience means to me and how I apply it. I have realised that what I had once thought of as resilience was often in practice a burdened and enduring way of thinking and behaving. Part of me was so highly skilled in outlasting troublesome situations in the hope they would change! Areas like pleasing others, being overly responsible when it had not been called for, jumping in with both feet before taking time to clarify what was really needed, avoiding challenge, or not asking for support when I needed it. These habitual ways of responding did produce results, some great ones at times, but the cost on me was fatigue, a sense of being snowed under and never quite catching up with myself.

Trust and persistence in our ability to be resilient and work our way around changing conditions and other obstacles is essential. However another vital ingredient is our ability to tap into our sense of renewal.

For me renewal has become part of my daily practice, the gift to myself of being and noticing the vast resources that live within me. Being willing to take a breath or two, pause, draw on a kind fascination with myself, allowing space for new possibilities to show themselves.

Some days are easier than others. I don’t always feel like slowing down, being kind to myself or others. However, I find that creating a space from yesterday’s story, letting go and allowing the potential for a new one to unfold, offers me the possibility to renew and restore what has been depleted.

For me renewal starts with my daily walk on waking, a time to develop good contact with myself anew. Contact that is grounded in my body, at ease, connected. This rhythmical opportunity encourages me to breath, reset my inner compass, pay attention to my resources, and be present to my intentions for the day ahead.

I would love to hear from you about the ways you find to renew yourself.