No matter how the past year has been for you, I’m certain that you at least want the opportunity to finish it off right.
The chance to start 2021 without any unresolved issues or unfinished business.
Well, in order to achieve this, there are some things that have to be done.
I won’t lie to you – not all of this will be easy, but each step is necessary.
Focus on the positive things
One of the most useful pieces of advice to help you make an introspection of the past year is to make two lists of all the crucial things that happened in your life in 2020.
Remember that “crucial” is a relative term, so these things don’t have to be significant as such – the fact that that they left an impact on you is more than enough.
Put all the bad things on one list and all the good ones on the other.
Now, burn the negative list goodbye.
This way, you’re symbolically leaving everything negative behind instead of carrying it with yourself into the next year.
You’re putting all of your focus on the good things and learning how to appreciate them.
Now, read the positive list carefully once more.
Be grateful for all the blessings and the good fortune you received, for the fact that you are alive and healthy, and for having your loved ones next to you.
Be grateful for each one of the things that happened to you and promise to never take life’s mercy for granted again.
However, don’t forget to be grateful for all the bad ones either.
They shaped you into the person you are today and gave you the strength you weren’t even aware you had.
And that is something to be thankful for too.
If you really want the new year to also be a new chapter of your life, you can’t carry any of the emotional weight from 2020 with you into it.
After all, what’s the point of turning a new leaf if you keep on turning back the pages and reading the parts of the book you already know by heart?
You can’t expect to make any progress in 2021 unless you get rid of resentment and grudges before anything else.
You can’t expect to enter the New Year peacefully if you’re consumed with the desire for revenge.
That’s why you should see these last days of 2020 as a perfect opportunity to forgive everyone who has done you any harm, including yourself, and even accept the apologies you never got.
It’s to free yourself from the burdens of someone else’s wrongdoings.
Most importantly – forgive yourself for all the times you didn’t treat yourself the way you should, failed to put yourself first, devalued your self worth, and settled for less than you deserve.
So, we talked about the ones who hurt you and did you wrong.
But what about the situations where things happened the other way around?
Let’s face it – you aren’t perfect either and it isn’t possible that you didn’t hurt anyone in 2020.
It is impossible that you didn’t insult, humiliate, or treat anyone badly, or that you didn’t break any hearts along the way.
It doesn’t have to necessarily mean that you’ve done any of these things on purpose.
However, the fact that you caused someone harm involuntarily doesn’t erase or ease their pain.
That’s why it is as equally important to apologize as it is to forgive.
Be the bigger man.
Say “I’m sorry.”
Repent of your mistakes and do everything in your power to correct them.
As you end another chapter of your life, it’s perfectly natural that you want closure on some things.
Don’t be ashamed to call the ones you think owe you an explanation and ask them the questions that have been left unanswered and about the things that have been left unsaid.
However, even if these people refuse to clear your doubts, you have to move on without closure and be done with it once and for all.
If nothing, you’ll always know you tried and that should be enough.
Thank everyone who deserves it
How long has it been since you called your friends and closest family members just to check up on them?
When was the last time you said “thank you” to the people who’ve been your rock for as long as you can remember?
To the ones who’ve been there to have your back, through thick and thin?
To the ones who are always wiping your tears away and putting a smile back on your face?
I know you think that these are your people who aren’t going anywhere.
That there’s nothing you could do for them to stop loving you, and they know how much they matter to you, even without you saying it.
Well, guess what?
Hearing some words of appreciation is always nice.
After all, these are the last people you should take for granted and disregard while you waste your time chasing the ones who couldn’t care less about you.
Pick up the phone.
Call them or send those texts.
Tell all these people how much they mean to you, how much you love them, and thank them for being the wind to your wings.
Most importantly – thank God.
Thank Him for all the blessings and for all of His mercy and grace.
Also, don’t forget to thank Him for all the closed doors and unanswered prayers.
Thank Him for all the times he saved you from yourself, without you even being aware of it.
Let go of negativity and toxic people
At the same time, cut ties with the ones who never deserved a place in your life – the ones who hold you back and use every opportunity to put you down.
Say goodbye to all those people who bring unrest to your life.
To toxic and selfish frenemies, to that guy who keeps leaving you and coming back as he pleases, to the coworkers who only see you as competition, and to the relatives who only remember you when they need you.
Together with them, let go of all the negativity and pessimism.
Get rid of all the negative thoughts and self-doubts and enter 2021 with a clear mindset!
Learn from your mistakes
Once you’ve admitted your misdeeds, if you want to start the next year right, the next step is to learn from them.
Make a list of all of the things you did wrong and see what each of these mistakes taught you.
This list shouldn’t serve as a tool for beating yourself up.
After all, what’s done is done and you can’t change the past.
However, you most certainly can learn from it and make sure not to repeat it.
Set an action plan
When you look around, all you see is proposals for New Year’s resolutions.
And that’s exactly what you’ve been doing every year until now – making a list of resolutions you never actually manage to stick with.
Well, let’s make this time different.
Instead of coming up with pointless resolutions, write down a concrete action plan regarding each one of your future plans.
However, remember that it won’t be the end of the world if you don’t accomplish some of these goals.
As long as you know you tried your best to do so.
Good luck and Happy New Year!