First, with a grateful eye:
- What are your achievements for 2010 that you should be grateful for?
- What gifts showed up in your life. Please take your time and reflect on this question in a deeper and higher meaning. There sure are new gifts and blessings appearing on our Path everyday not just every year. We just may not be aware of them.
Think about your health, finances, family, education, kids, spouse, partner... think about your spirituality, closeness to your Creator...Think about your feelings, peace of mind, safety... The list is endless.
- Record all your blessings and boons. How could you express your gratitude? How could you use them in a good cause?
Second, I want you to look at the past year with a repentent eye. A humble eye that seeks forgiveness for all its wrongful thoughts and deeds. And, while seeking forgiveness, let's forgive. Forgive anyone who offended you, forgive anyone who hurt you. Find excuses for him/her. Send them love and peace. Carrying grudge and rancor hurt no one but yourself. It's a heavy load that stain the heart and burden the shoulder. It affects you energetically, emotionally and even physically. It cripples you and prevent your growth and advancement.
Forgive and seek forgiveness. Repent to your Creator and start the new year with a fresh promise and a renewed intention. Intention to sincerely seek your Right Path and follow your mission in life, promise to spread peace and love in the world, to be useful to yourself, your family, your environment and to the whole world.
It is really rewarding to do these reflections in writting. Journaling helps you understand your emotions and connect to your feelings. It helps you explore new terrotory and arrange your thoughts and plans.
Next, I want you to reflect on the coming year 2011. Are you ready to face this New Year of your life?
Do you have a clear vision, a big dream. A dream that will make you jump out of bed every morning feeling fresh and challenged? Are you willing to do all what it takes to fulfill this dream? Are you ready to take serious steps towards achieving your goals?
Well, if not, no better time to start than now.
This time of the year, I usually take time to revise my last year plan and devise a new one. My New Year plan reflects my visions for the upcoming 12 months, my dreams, my intentions, my hopes and goals.
Planning our year in advance prevents our actions from being void and aimless. It helps us focus on the important stuff, holds our priorities straight and keeps us going. Planning also provides an important tool for evaluation and accounting along the way. It helps us stay on track.
Think of what you would like to achieve during the next year. Consider all your life, all your hopes, your dreams. Take your time.
Include all of the following fields:
1. My Nation: What am I adding to the world? To my nation (My Ummah)? To my people? Your contribution can be in any field be it scientific, entertaining, educational, physical health, charity work, financial, media….it could also be your intention in raising your kids or being an active, respectful member of your community that reflects a great example of a Muslim... your options are limitless.
2. My spiritual development: How am I improving or evolving spiritually and religiously? My worshiping acts, my ethics and values, heart and soul purification, …
3. My health: How will I take care of my health this year? How will I improve it? This should include exercise plans, healthy eating habits, healthy sleeping routine, dealing with any addictions or bad habits…
4. My family: How will I improve/add to my relationships with my spouse, children, parents, relatives…
5. My social life: How will I improve/add to my relationships with my neighbors, friends, society, environment…what will be my social contributions this year? How will I add to/improve my surrounding, my community?
6. My personal development: What new skills/knowledge I intend to learn this year?
7. My work/ career: What are my ambitions and what steps will I take this year towards fulfilling them? Even if you are a non-working mother, raising your children is a very important and significant task, how are you going to improve your skills in this field? and if your children are at school in the morning, how are you going to invest your free time to add new meaning and challenges into your life? you can join a charity organization, a community developing project, volunteer work...
8. My life: In this field you can include any other miscellaneous items of your life: your savings, improvement on the ways you earn/ spend money. How to make the most of your time and avoid wasted time. Any entertainment or fun activities you would like to have this year like new places to visit, camping…your reflections on your future… the sky is the limit.