I want to start by saying that this is going to be a long post. These reflective posts are how I make sure to live my life intentionally. They matter to me and I love being able to look back on them in future years. I know that this might not be interesting to many (if not any) of you, so please feel free to skip it. If some of you find it interesting, all the better.

This particular exercise is following Susannah Conway’s Unraveling 2021 sheet. You can download it right here. I split the reflective questions looking back on 2020 in and the questions to help clarify goals/dreams for 2021 into two posts. This is part II. All questions are Susannah’s and are copyrighted to her.

  1. First, choose a word to guide you through the next 12 months. Pick a word that makes you feel expanded. Encouraged. Inspired. There’s no right or wrong answer so go with your intuition. What’s your Word for 2021? YES.
  2. If you truly embodied your Word every day in 2021, what would you do differently? I would welcome life with all that it has to give me. This year will come with a lot of unknowns and instead of feeling like a victim, I want to welcome all of life’s surprises and ups and downs. I want to lean into life, honor it, cherish it, suck that marrow.
  3. What one thing could you do each day to anchor your Word into your routine? I could have a mantra and also do a 5-minute meditation before I get out of bed.
  4. How does your Word make you feel? Excited and full of energy. Ready to conquer the day. Full of optimism and joy.
  5. Do you want any extra words to support your Word for 2021? Brainstorm here. Think about what you need in the different areas of your life: home… work… relationships.. Health… self-care… What would support your Word? I’ve been thinking about this and the words on my list so far are: lighter, kinder, braver, wilder, delighted and enough, content, spacious, connected. I will pick some subset of these.
  6. What are you looking forward to in 2021? I am looking forward to the vaccine, to being able to travel and go on adventures again, to taking David on college tours, to seeing my family, to hugging my friends, to the next steps at work, to slowly getting to feel normal life again.
  7. What are you feeling apprehensive about? That much of this might not come, that we will spend another year at home, that one of my family members might get sick, that there’s still so much unknown.
  8. What life lessons are you taking with you into 2021? That life is short and can turn on a dime. That we don’t get to choose what happens but we do get to choose how we react to it, how we receive it and what we do as a result. 
  9. What area of your life do you most want to develop in 2021? My attitude and my outlook. I want to fundamentally change how I see life and how I approach life. 
  10. What part of your self do you yearn to nurture in 2021? My body. I want to keep exercising and getting stronger. I also want to nurture my soul and be kinder to myself all the time.
  11. Fast-forward to December 2021. You’re sitting in a café, musing over the last 12 months. Where do you want to be… 
    1. in your head? (work, dreams, goals)  At a job I love and where I feel secure, challenged and appreciated. I want to feel full, clear and fully content. I want to fully own who I am and have a job that honors that.
    2. in your heart? (relationships, family, friends)  I want to be kind and generous and full of abundance in my relationships. I want to feel expansive and patient.
    3. in your soul? (beliefs, practices, self-love)  I want to be happy, optimistic, grateful and full of joy. I want to say YES to everything life has to offer me and see the magic that my life is and continues to be..
    4. in your physical world? (home, health, hobbies) I want to be strong and dedicated and fully step into my abilities, my strength and honor my health.
  1. Okay, let’s take it up a notch. Use this page to describe what 2021 looks like in your ideal world. Be specific! What are your dreams for love this year? Work? Play? Where are you hungry for change? How do you want 2021 to FEEL? Use your answers from the previous pages to craft your ideal vision for the next 12 months. What would saying YES to your life look and feel like? Write out everything your heart desires for this new year. Be bold. I want this year to be full of joy. I want to be optimistic about how things turn out and what things mean. But not a silly optimism, instead a deeply seeded belief that there’s so much goodness in the world and that things will be okay. I want to support my husband in his incredible ventures. I want to support my kids in who they are and all they will become. I want to fully step into my own self with all the promise and possibility that it opens up. I want to be kind and supportive and generous to everyone, including myself. Yes would look like waking up full of energy and going to bed full of gratitude. Living every single moment of every single day.
  2. Now let’s give those dreams and plans some shape. Use the grid to start plotting the details of 2021. Use words and pictures, dates and anniversaries. Include actual events and made-up dreams, too. Be playful. Doodle your heart out. Back in 2013, our January OLW assignment involved setting intentions and I really enjoyed that, so I thought maybe I can do that instead. 
  • January: Yes to Baby Steps: Start small. Make a plan for the steps you want to take and give yourself a lot of grace. Take a handful of steps. You got this.
  • February: Yes to the Unknown:  Be open to new things this month. Listen more, watch others. Be willing to take some steps into the unknown and assume the best. Be brave. 
  • March:  Yes You Can:  This is usually your hardest month. No break, still too cold. It feels hard to make it through this month but you can. Yes you can. Keep going. 
  • April: The Quiet Yes: Be still. Listen to the whispers of your soul. See what your heart is telling you. Listen to the conversations in your head. Hear yourself.
  • May: Yes Just Yes: Time to be bold. Jump in. Dare to go all in and see what happens. What happens if you say yes?!
  • June: Yes to Light: Breathe in the fresh air. Summer is here. Smell the water. Go outside. Sit in the sunshine. One more school year is over. Celebrate your life. 
  • July: Yes to adventures: Create some adventure. Go places. Do things. Hug your people. Take chances.
  • August: Yes to Life: Time to get organized again, transitions are coming. Eleventh and Seventh grades.  Get organized, plan, prepare and do what you need to do. Write down all your dreams. Make plans. 
  • September: Yes to Possibilities: Time to root and surrender. This is a hard month for you. Transitions are rough. But you also turn 47. It’s magical to get to have another year. Remember the growth mindset. Let go of your preconceived ideas and embrace the possibilities. 
  • October: Yes to Connection:  Reach out to others. Connect with your people. Make new connections. Say yes to more things. 
  • November:  Yes to Rest: It’s ok if you need to start slowing down. Give yourself grace. Year is almost over. Can you do one more thing, take one more step in the direction of your dreams? What do you still want to say yes to?
  • December:  Yes to Celebration:  You’ve come a long way. It’s time to celebrate. Honor. Be grateful. Thank 2021 for all that it gave you. Fully bask in how far you’ve come so you can bid it farewell. Celebrate all your yeses.
  1. List 3 unhelpful beliefs about yourself you’re ready to release 
    1. That I am not strong.
    2. That I am not beautiful.
    3. That I am not worthy of belonging.
  2. List 3 duties or commitments you feel ready to let go of in 2021 
    1. I am not going to do the weekly album this year.
    2. Letting go of the need to blog daily
    3. Moving from weekly photos to monthly.
  3. List 3 skills you’d like to learn or improve in 2021
    1. Stitching maybe
    2. Drawing always
    3. Coding maybe
  4. List 3 books you intend to read this year: as always, i know i will read many. 
  5. How could you bring more calm into your life (and head) this year? More journaling and meditation, sitting by the fire, flowers, candles, nature always bring me calm. And take baths!
  6. List 3 things about yourself you positively love 
    1. My empathy and kindness
    2. That i am always trying to be a better version of myself.
    3. My deep and endless love for my people.
  7. List 3 ways you could be kinder to your body this year 
    1. Take care of my teeth and gums.
    2. Exercise and hydrate.
    3. Put cream on my skin.
    4. Rest!
  8. List 3 ways you could connect with loved ones in 2021 
    1. Call mom and Yona on a schedule, more regularly.
    2. Make a weekly date with Leslie and Monthly date with Jess
    3. Dial into the zooms every time.
  9. List 3 people you could extend compassion to
    1. My husband and kids.
    2. Myself.
    3. Every single person I come in contact with can always use more compassion, cause can’t we all?
  10. How could you bring more love into your life this year? I could look for the good, spend time celebrating, practice self-love, hug and touch more, and date nights!
  11. List 3 interests/hobbies you would like to explore more in 2021 
    1. Sketching + photography + journaling + stitching
    2. Hiking + camping + climbing + meditation + biking
    3. Not sure yet.
  12. List 3 ways you could feed your imagination this year 
    1. Reading
    2. Leaning in and saying yes.
    3. Travel + adventure
  13. List 3 ways you could bring more passion into your world this year 
    1. Saying yes to adventures and new things
    2. Yes to date nights and time together
    3. Making things happen. 
  14. List 3 dreams you would like to manifest this year (personal or professional) 
    1. Alaska!
    2. Maybe Climbing Whitney
    3. Feeling settled at work.
  15. How could you bring more creative energy into your life this year? 
    1. Maybe a december daily like book for the year, I have to think more on this.
    2. More drawing and reading combos.
    3. Maybe cooking more.
  16. List 3 ways you could bring more mindfulness to your mornings 
    1. Exercise + meditation + calling mom in the mornings. 
    2. Journaling for 15 minutes (to set intentions)
    3. Sketching/Art for 15-20 minutes.
    4. Being outside more, stretching.
  17. List 3 ways you could bring more mindfulness to your evenings (I added this because I want to do both mornings and evenings.) 
    1. Stretching, removing make up and flossing in the evenings. 
    2. Journaling for 15 minutes (releasing and gratitude)
    3. Reading + disconnecting. 
    4. Taking an evening walk.
    5. Taking a bath.
  18. List 3 ways you could cherish your home this year 
    1. Buy flowers
    2. Cozy blankets
    3. Light candles.
  19. List 3 ways you could connect more deeply with nature in 2021 
    1. Camp and hike. And climb in nature.
    2. Sink my feet into the sand and into the ocean.
    3. Climb trees.
  20. List 3 places in your city, town or neighbourhood you want to explore
    1. All the beaches.
    2. San Fran.
    3. More socal this year. 
  21. How could you bring a sense of groundedness into your life this year?  
    1. Regular yoga + meditation + journaling
    2. Doing more stretching
    3. Being out in nature, taking walks.
  22. Using your favourite tarot or oracle deck, draw one card for the overall theme of the upcoming year and then a card for each month of 2021. I don’t like to do this so as well as the monthly above, I will list a bunch of things I can do this year.
  • Yes to calm: journaling, meditation, candles, sitting outside, music, tara brach
  • Yes to the outdoors: Hiking, Climbing, swimming, waterfalls, sand, ocean
  • Yes to healthy living: Cook more, eat more veggies, more water, walking, sleep
  • Yes to routine: morning and evening routines
  • Yes to being active: stretching, strength, yoga, peloton. climbing
  • Yes to new adventures: travel, climbing trees, 
  • Yes to art: draw, paint, photography, 
  • Yes to stories: week in the life, story albums, december daily, OLW
  • Yes to romance: dancing with Jake, date nights, 
  • Yes to family: family dinners, project with N, project with D, vacation
  • Yes to connection: emails/calls with friends, write letters, call mom, call yona
  • Yes to optimism: write what went right, celebrate, donate, thank yous, send gifts
  • Yes to learning new things: podcasts, new classes, nonfiction books
  • Yes to joy: dance, listen to music, celebrations
  • Yes to adventure: book vacations, try new things.
  1. 2021 will be the year I finally become an optimist!
  2. I will nourish myself with fresh, unprocessed food, a positive attitude, good friends.
  3. I will make more time for myself and the people I love. 
  4. I will recharge my batteries by resting, exercising, and sleeping more.
  5. This year I will open my heart to possibility.
  6. I will pay more attention to the good.
  7. I will learn more about leaning in, saying yes, leaping.
  8. I will release my attachment to my stories and my past and my anxiety/worry.
  9. I wish for 2021 to feel magical.
  10. This year I will say NO to worry, stress, negativity, things that drain me.
  11. This year I will say YES to LIFE with all of its gifts.
  12. What is your secret wish for 2021? Declare it here! My secret wish is that this year I fundamentally change the way I see life. That I pay attention to the good, internalize it and really see it. That I stay optimistic and step fully into my life.

I wholeheartedly believe that everything is possible in 2021!

As always, I mention many of these same thoughts from last year and here, here, and here. I am pretty sure these themes have been in my life in some way or another for many years. I know that they will likely still be around in 2021 and 2022 and onward. What I’d like to do this year is to make a dent. To move things forward a little bit. Every forward step I take moves me in the right direction and that’s all I can ask for.

Close your eyes for a moment and imagine stepping into the shoes of you from December 2021, one year from now. You are one year older and one year wiser and you’ve lived every day of 2021 fully and completely. You have a message of encouragement about 2021. There’s stuff you want to share… stuff you’re eager to tell yourself. When you’re ready, open your eyes, pick up your pen, and write a letter from your future self, starting with Dear Karen: I am so proud of you. Keep going, you got this!

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.