I have to confess something: I love rituals.

I especially love rituals and practices that help me get more present, curious, and engaged with myself and that help me feel empowered to create and cultivate the life I desire.

The holiday season is a time of the year when rituals abound — trimming the Christmas tree, lighting the Menorah, sillyawesome holiday cards sent off to your friends and family, etc.. And, beyond the standard holiday rituals that I absolutely love indulging in during this season, for the last five years now I’ve added yet another personalized ritual into the last week of the year that allows me to reflect on and close out the prior year and prepare for the coming one in a way that feels deeply supportive and fruitful for my overall growth and life progress.   

I’ve come to think of this ritual as my Annual Closing and Welcoming — a process where I get to deeply reflect on my prior year, honoring all that I learned, gained, lost, and was challenged by, gleaning all the lessons and insights I can so that I can bring emotional closure to the year. And then, in that same week before the new year starts, I spend time reflecting on all that I want to create, call in, explore, and seek support with, setting intentions for what I hope to create and pursue in the next twelve months.

(And I usually do this with some Loreena McKennitt playing in the background and steaming cups of licorice tea — highly recommended!)

I’ve found this ritual to be grounding, healing, clarifying, exciting, and fruitful in helping me show up more powerfully and creatively for my life and, in the spirit of the season, today I’d like to share this ritual with you.

So in this blog post — which is Part 1 of 2 — I’m going to share the very prompts I explore annually to mindfully close out my year so that you can likewise do this. And then, in two weeks on Sunday, December 27th, I’ll be sharing Part 2, a post with prompts designed to help you get clearer on what you want to create and work towards in 2016 so that you can enter the new year consciously, with clear intentions, and soulful goals.

The best part of this whole ritual is that, at the end of every year, when I read back over my notes from the year prior, I can trace and celebrate the accomplishments and see which life areas then and now may call for additional supports and attention. The whole process helps me get more present with my life, more clear about what it is I want to create next, and more curious and conscious about how I’m growing, changing, and evolving in my life as the years pass. My hope is that this ritual of closing out 2015 and welcoming 2016 might feel good and useful to you, too.

So pour yourself a cup of tea and keep reading…


Hi there. This blog post has been retired and is now included (along with plenty of incredible other material) in my e-book “Soul + Strategy: The Ultimate Right Brain/Left Brain Annual Planning Workbook” which you can purchase from my digital shop here. 


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