I stayed late in the city after class last week to have dinner with a friend before heading back north for home. I’d forgotten how peaceful the trains are post-rush hour. But you have to pay attention to the time and the conductor’s announcements. It’s easy to miss your stop when everything outside the windows is draped in the same, indistinguishable darkness.
There’s a loneliness to the night that’s always felt a bit romantic to me. I looked out at empty station parking lots, like chalkboards wiped clean, and the purple mountains in the distance, giving way to deep gray and then disappearing altogether.
My reflection was staring back at me the whole time, jostling and constant.
I’ve noticed I’m a different person coming home from the city than the one heading in. I know this is an illusion but it feels very real. The energy of beginning something - a day, a sentence, a relationship - feels so radically opposite from the energy of ending. On the macro level that’s what we’re all facing right now: the ending and beginning of years. Feeling into the difference of how we regard what is nearly over and in the rearview vs what is still on the horizon line, waiting to be known and to unfold.
The way we regard the events in our lives is everything. Because the way we regard something becomes the feeling we ascribe to it. How conscious can we be about this? At the onset of a new year and in the midst of daily life in general?
What I appreciate about a new year is the opportunity to take stock and get intentional. To consider what we love in our lives and give thanks for it and to also consider what is no longer serving us and to release it consciously and ceremoniously now.
It’s meaningful to do this kind of introspective work on January 1st but the most powerful people are the ones who do it regularly, all throughout the year and throughout their lives. Because powerful people know themselves. They know when they’re resisting their full potential. They know where there’s more work to be done. They know when it’s time to push harder and when it’s time to rest or surrender. They know when they’re out of alignment with their purpose. They know how to listen for redirection so they can be guided back where they belong.
They know how to relinquish and how to surrender - even when the pull of the familiar is seductive and strong. They subscribe to a meaningful perspective. They know the power of their words and their thoughts. They choose to see their lives as miraculous. They don’t need to deny the darkness in order to stand in their light. They can let both be true, as they return their focus, over and over again, toward what it is they want to nurture and expand inside their reality.
“Know thyself” is a spiritual directive for good reason. Until we know ourselves deeply, we can’t know the difference between being in alignment with our purpose vs being out of alignment. We can’t call ourselves to the proverbial mat, lovingly, or hold ourselves to a higher standard. Knowledge engenders empowerment. It’s intimate. It’s alive. We are dwelling on the frequency of curiosity when we seek to know something. And curiosity is ultra abundant. It means our hearts and minds are open to receive more information and a deeper understanding.
“Let me know myself more deeply” is a beautiful intention for the new year.
“May I release everything that is in the way of perfect alignment with my purpose” is another one.
2023 is comprised of 12 months, 52 weeks, 8,760 hours, 525,600 minutes and 31,536,000 seconds. What do you want the theme of that time to be in your life? Will you carve out 5 or 10 minutes a day to affirm your intentions and check in on the relationship you have with yourself/soul? How important do you believe it is to know yourself and to live in a state of empowerment and alignment with your purpose?
These are the kinds of questions we want to be asking ourselves regularly in order to support our own process of awakening and staying awake. The world is a field of poppies seducing us back to sleep. Anchor yourself in the intention to stay awake regardless. Awake to the magic and the power of your path and all you’re here to do and be and impact in this life, for the sake of your own healing and the healing of the collective.
Lots of love for 2023!