WRITTEN by ANGEL CHERNOFF // 35 COMMENTS
As the year winds down, we tend to yearn for a very small and selective range of life experiences—the happy holidays, the relaxing times, the settings and experiences that make us feel comfortable. And yet, the full range of our reality at this time of year is often quite different. Life gives us an extensive array of experiences that evoke feelings ranging from sadness to struggle to pride to anger to love to loneliness… to happiness to excitement and more. These feelings are all part of being a living, breathing human being, regardless of the season.
So, we can revolt against the unfairness of life—the unfairness of having to deal with pain, having to cope with uncertainty, having to feel lonely and uneasy and upset. Or we can embrace every experience life gives us, including all our highs and lows—all the blissful moments and painful ones and everything in between. Life is not just happy and comfortable 24/7. It’s well-rounded, it’s full-featured, and it’s real.
Embracing the full range of life’s experiences this holiday season means embracing every moment with our full presence, being open and vulnerable to reality, being gentle with ourselves when moments are tougher than we expected, and practicing sincere gratitude no matter what happens.
It means accepting life as it is, and accepting ourselves as we are.
It means not expecting the best to happen every step of the way, but instead accepting what happens with each step, and making the very best of it.
This isn’t easy, of course, but it’s worth working on, together.
Yes, the New Year is rapidly approaching.
Let’s make a pact to enter it with a more open, accepting, and resilient collective mindset.
By committing the right ideas and intentions to memory.
Over the past decade Marc and I have written various “notes to self” like the ones I’ve listed below (all of which are now excerpts from our NY Times bestselling book), and then we’ve read and re-read them until they became ingrained in our minds. These memorized “notes to self” help us stay on track, by empowering us to make the best and most effective use of the ever-changing reality in front of us.
We’ve passed these notes on to our course students and live seminar attendees over the years, and many of them have thanked us for doing so. I hope YOU find value in them today, too. And I challenge you to memorize at least a couple of them before the New Year. (Note: For the sake of not being tediously redundant, I only wrote “Note to Self” as a precursor on the first note below.)
Although none of the aforementioned “notes to self” immediately force you to do anything different, they represent a timely shift in perspective. And perspective is where peace and happiness begins. From there, you can change your posture from one of tension and resistance to one of acceptance and opportunity.
Ultimately, the goal isn’t to get rid of all your negative thoughts, feelings or life situations as you journey into the New Year. The goal is to change your response to them.
The days, weeks and months ahead—both before and after the New Year—will be filled with incredible highs and stressful lows, for all of us. But in any case, we can train our minds to make the best of the present moment as it unfolds. Just take it one “note” at a time, and please know that if you’re struggling with any of this, you are not alone. Many of us are right there with you, working hard to feel better, think more clearly, and keep our lives on track. This is precisely why Marc and I wrote our book and built our course. Both of these invaluable resources are filled with proven guidance on how to do just that. And believe it or not, Marc and I review a lot of our own material on a regular basis too, just to center our minds on these proven principles.
We sincerely hope you will join us as we prepare to begin again in 2019.