Taking Stock

I wanted to share with you a great habit that I was taught to carry out at the turn of the year, and which has served me well .. which is reflecting on what happened in the past year and how I handled it.

I love the quiet time in between Christmas and New Year and I made a commitment to myself a while ago to take this time for myself, for quiet enjoyment of the season, the weather, and taking a look back over the past twelve months.

Life has a habit of throwing the unexpected in our way (thanks 2020!), however well we plot and plan our lives, and often I’ll be surprised at the things that happened that I could never have predicted the year before. Sometimes these are wonderful and sometimes less so: in examining how I responded I find clues to who I am and how I’m showing up in my life and others’

So maybe you’d like to join me. Carve out a little space for yourself in the next few days to ask these questions:

What happened in this past year that I could never have predicted?

How did I respond? Was that helpful to me and those around me?

Who was important to me in the past year?

What one thing would I have liked to be different?

What would I like to do differently in this coming year?

I’d love to hear your thoughts .. do you have any other questions you’ve found useful?

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Relationships Advent Calendar Day 22 . Give to Receive

You might be right in the middle of the Christmas whirl right now, all that wrapping ahead of you!! Or maybe Christmas is going to be quieter this year. Don’t forget there are other ways to give at Christmas, and people who are altruistic can often feel more satisfied in life, plus it’s an opportunity to spend time with others .. what’s to lose?!

So take some time out of your busy schedule, switch off the TV and have a think about how you’d both like to give back in the coming year .. if time’s an issue but you’re cash rich how about setting up a monthly direct debit to a charity?

Or volunteer for a project, cleaning up your local beach or park, helping out with the National Trust (you can actually get free membership for being a volunteer) .. the possibilities are endless .. you get to keep the warm Christmas glow for the whole year!!!

#adventcalendar #adventchallenge #relationships #wellbeing

Relationships Advent Calendar . Day 21 . What’s Your Jam?

Nothing brings back memories quite like music .. think about your friends and family .. what’s ‘your’ song?

For most of us there’s a special feeling associated with these tunes ..

So today your task is to find the song or songs that bring back these special memories and share them .. have it playing when they walk in from work, call the local radio station and ask them to do a dedication, email a YouTube clip or post it on their Facebook wall .. or, if you have one, play it on your guitar, piano or kazoo the next time you see them ..

#adventcalendar #adventchallenge #relationships #wellbeing

Relationships Advent Calendar Day 20 . Switch on your Relationship Radar

You’ve just spent 19 days doing something every day for the benefit of your relationships .. notice a difference yet?

So now you’re a super honed relationship athlete in tip top condition it’s time to start looking for opportunities to flex those muscles ..

Keep your eyes and ears open for the many small opportunities that come up today to make a difference, and see how many you take .. a relationship Christmas star for the winner!

#adventcalendar #adventchallenge #relationships #wellbeing

Relationships Advent Calendar Day 19 . Admit When You’re Wrong

Relationships thrive where both people can give a little ground, and let’s face it, who doesn’t like to be right?

Today your task is to find something someone else is right about, give them a big beaming smile and let them know, with grace and love ..

Some of the most powerful words in your relationships may well be “Yes, you’re right.”

Afterwards spend some time thinking about how easy or difficult it was to do that, and how the other person responded .. what did you learn?

#adventcalendar #adventchallenge #relationships #wellbeing

Relationships Advent Calendar . Day 16 . High Five

Sometimes it’s tempting to take the good things for granted and only focus on the things people do wrong .. we can have long conversations with our friends and family about the difficulties they’re having.

How about taking some time to high five someone you know for something they do or have been doing really well .. this year maybe more than any other we could all do with a reminder of the efforts we’ve been putting in.

#adventcalendar #adventchallenge #relationships #wellbeing

Relationships Advent Calendar Day 11 . Befriend Our Planet

Keeping a healthy sense of perspective is really important in maintaining our wellbeing.

Today, how about thinking how you can widen your focus and do something to give back to this beautiful world we live in .. pick up litter that you spot in the street, pop some money in a charity collecting tin or bag up some unwanted possessions in good condition for your local charity shop, save energy by having a short shower (after that yummy long bath you had yesterday), turn the lights off and have an early night ..

#adventcalendar #adventchallenge #relationships #wellbeing

Relationships Advent Calendar . Day 10 . Look After Yourself

Today’s a reminder that it’s important to take care of ourselves so that we have enough left over to show up in our relationships with others.

So schedule some time out today, buy yourself something lush, just stop for ten minutes and have a cup of tea, or luxuriate in the bath with some bubbles ..

#adventcalendar #adventchallenge #relationships #wellbeing

Relationships Advent Calendar . Day 8 . Smiley Culture

Have you ever tried walking round smiling all day? Smiling at strangers?

As well as people thinking you’re slightly unhinged I’m sure others will have smiled back, because smiling is infectious!!

Give it a go today, and if you’re wearing a mask, see if you can smile with your eyes.

#adventcalendar #adventchallenge #relationships #wellbeing

Relationships Advent Calendar Day 22 . Give of Yourself

You’re probably right in the middle of the Christmas whirl right now, school shows, parties, and all that wrapping ahead of you!! But don’t forget there are other ways to give at Christmas, and couples who are altruistic can often be more satisfied in their couple relationship, plus it’s an opportunity to spend time together .. what’s to lose?!

So take some time out of your busy schedule, switch off the TV and talk with your sweetie about how you’d both like to give back in the coming year .. if time’s an issue but you’re cash rich how about setting up a monthly direct debit from your joint account to a charity you decide on together?

Or volunteer as a couple for a project, cleaning up your local beach or park, helping out with the National Trust (you can actually get free membership for being a volunteer) .. the possibilities are endless .. you get to keep the warm Christmas glow for the whole year!!!

And for those of you yet to meet your sweetie, what a great opportunity to meet like-minded people!

What did you do, let me know in the Comments below, or tweet me!

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