2020 has shown us a whole new level of weird, and still trying to wrap our minds around it, we might feel like we haven’t gotten anywhere this year.
I’m pretty sure you did, however, the only way to find out is to dive deep and reflect on what has been. In today’s post, I’ll offer you a self-reflective walking practice that you can use to look back on 2020 (no matter how weird it was) and discover if you’re still on your path.
it is a good time to go inside
November is the perfect time for reflection. As we’re nearing the end of the year, the days are getting dark and moody. Naturally, we’re inclined to retreat inside and go within.
It could be that it’s different this year, but the festive season in December never leaves much room to take our time and contemplate on what has been.
Yet, these moments of introspection are so important for the year to come. They allow us to separate our patterns, behaviours and activities that contribute to our desires and dreams from those that do not.
It’s an opportunity to be truly honest with yourself, and ask yourself: Am I still on my path?
different ways to reflect
There is not one way to practice self-reflection, but when you do you have to be honest and open with yourself. After all, these practices are meant to learn and discover things about yourself in order for you grow as a person. As such it is an important part on our inner pilgrimage.
Truly tuning in with yourself is to feel things. Walking takes us out of our regular environment, helping us to get out of our mind and into our bodies – the place where these feelings can be felt.
The below walking practice thus focuses not only on your ideas and thoughts regarding certain experiences, it also asks you to pay attention to your body’s reaction. Let’s begin!
get yourself sorted
Before you start, make sure to get yourself sorted. Let others know you’re taking some time for you, and switch off your phone. Make yourself comfortable when you’re going outside by putting on a warm coat or fluffy hat.
Before you start, take a few deep breaths – in through the nose, out through the mouth. Remind yourself why you’re doing this, and promise yourself that whatever you find you will observe it with kindness.
self-reflective practice: walking through the year
With this walking practice you will be walking through your year following the quarters.
When you start walking, recall the first quarter of the year. Try to answers the following questions:
- What events, people or activities can I remember? What things come to mind that really popped out?
- Were these light moments? Were these moments that brightened my heart, did I feel aligned with myself ? If yes, what was I doing and what made it so incredibly good?
- Were these darker moments? Were these moments that I didn’t feel like myself, or were things difficult. If yes, what made me feel that way and how did I deal with the situation?
Apart from the answers, notice what feelings come up. Can you discover lighter feelings, even in darker moments? Sometimes we have to do tough things, in order to get to the good stuff.
Remember to be kind. There is no need to judge these experiences. When you have gone through the first quarter move on to the next one and so forth.
Once you have gone through the entire year, ask yourself:
- Which experiences, feelings or moments I’ve just named would I bring into the final weeks of this year? What things do I want to keep doing? What things do I want to do more of?
- Which of the things I have experienced or felt, do I wish to leave behind? What does no longer serve me?
If you’re planning on setting intentions or goals for the upcoming year, the findings of this walking practice will help you tremendously. I’d advise you to record things on a voice recorder or write them down when returning home.
and… how was that?
And… how was that?
Perhaps you’ve discovered certain actions you’ve been taken that have proven to be helpful, patterns you wish to let go off as they no longer serve you, or a handful of deeply meaningful moments in an otherwise difficult year.
Whatever it is. Hopefully these practices brought you some insight into the past year that could serve as guidance in these final months of 2020, and the year to come.