A year can go by in the quickest of flashes. And while each successive day may seem to differ just slightly from the last, when a year’s worth of those days has passed, we may find ourselves in an entirely new place from when we began.
While the past must stay in the past – as dwelling will do us no good – I think that reflection is an important component of personal growth. Looking back at a period of time all at once, like a snapshot, can allow us to see what we’ve accomplished and how we’ve grown – spiritually, physically, emotionally, and more.
Reflection can be done at any time – and can focus on any amount of time – but when the end of a year comes around, reflection always seems to join it naturally. With the final days of 2014 making their appearance, I’m looking back on the past few hundred of them – and urging you to do the same.
I love to make a little comparison chart to see where I am right now, compared to where I was exactly a year ago. Where I live, what I do for work, where my health stands… This past year was full of lots of changes for me, and it’s really crazy to realize just how much a typical day differs for me right now vs. the same time last year.
It’s also fun to list out accomplishments – in all aspects of life. For me, it’s reassurance that all of my hard work was not for nothing; that even though I may not see it on a daily basis, when I look at the bigger picture, the ever-changing path I’m carving for myself is full of so many milestones. It helps me to trust that this path has me headed in the right direction – whatever that direction may be.
Lastly, it’s fun to write down some memories – whether big or small. Places I saw… people I met… situations that had me dying of laughter. These are the things that infuse joy into each and every day. These are the moments that we string together to create a life filled with happiness.
Whether your year was full of big changes, or small changes, or good ones, or not so good, it’s always best to look back with a smile. Be proud of your accomplishments, and look at hardships as both opportunities and learning experiences. Know that everything is happening as it should – and use this reflective snapshot as ammunition to create the best next year of your life.
2014, thank you for all you’ve given me. And 2015… Let’s do this.
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2014 was a wonderful year for personal growth. I grew stronger in my confidence as a writer and as a person. I was able to more clearly express my opinion, sharing myself with others, and allowed myself to be more authentic. That’s a big thing for me since I tend to be rather shy. I’m still working on it, but having more fun with the adventure of it all.
Wishing everyone an Amazing 2015!
During 2014 I finally did something about wanting write and started a blog. I started meditating and doing yoga daily and can tell that it’s done wonders for my health and state of mind. Bring on 2015!
This is such a great post! I definitely think that it’s very important to take the time to reflect on your year and think about both you hardships and accomplishments. This is something that I’m trying to practice more often, since I tend to easily only focus on the negative things going on in my life. Reflecting on certain periods of time has really helped me feel more optimistic and grateful for everything in my life.
I- think it’s important to do this. Especially this year. I also have to make a wish at midnight. That’s what I’m going to spend New Year’s Eve doing….reflecting.
Looks like your 2014 growth was amazing! I graudated from university, got a new job, and a dog! :) Love this post – I am so excited for new beginnings and new adventures!
i think this is so important to do at the end of a year! it’s great to reflect on all the good and bad that helped me grow even more.
personally, the transition into college this year really changed my life in many ways. i’ve learned the hard yet enjoyable challenge for truly “growing up” AND the fun times i can have with friends and family.
thanks for a post that made me reflect on all the good times in 2014!
Well i have to say in my case it’s impossible to decide whether 2014 was good or bad for me. If it comes to friends – this year was amazing ! I have never been such a outgoing and sociable person. I am really glad. But if it comes to family and home, well i have lost my dad, grandmother and have been moving out three times. It was intense year. Now i can actually feel like an adult, because this year i had to build myself again.
What a great post. For the last couple of years I’ve been making list over all of the things I accomplished, the things I failed at, bridges I crossed..and so on.. Its a great thing to look back on.
The idea about writing down memories from the year is great…I think it works especially good with kids (thanks for the idea)!! This year was huge for my family and me, as we moved back to the US from Switzerland and had another baby. As you put it, life can move pretty darn fast and taking the time to ‘record’ our memories is a big deal. Thanks so much for sharing and best of luck in 2015!!!
I love writing down memories on little pieces of paper, putting them in a box/jar/container, then going back and looking at them all on New Years Eve. I like the little things, like hilarious moments of undying laughter, some money I earned, and little accomplishments (300th blog post, organized something, made some crafts). New Years has a lot of creative opportunities!
I love that, post! I tend to be in the present and not look in the past… but reading your post I realize that a minimum of reflection can be useful, also to be able to set intentions for the next year, Knowing where we stand and being proud of us! How grateful that is… A middle bewteen going with the flow of life and also be a creator of our life! :-)
I love writing down all the important moments and achievements of the year, is something I always do!!
Amazing how much can change in a year! I’ve started a new blog, moved house, got pregnant, got promoted, and feel so different and more optimistic than a year ago! Lovely post :)
Hey :) This is my first time here.
I love the ideas of reflecting on what had happened in 2014 so that 2015 will be better than this. I had a very tough year now, and I guess my country too. Wish us good and happiness! :)
This was a lovely post that encouraged me to reflect upon my past year in a positive light – thank you for the motivation to do so! Congratulations on your year of growth, and best wishes for a healthy, happy New Year!
Great inspirational way to reflect over the last year : ) I´ve also moved, to a new country, and started an Etsy shop. Loved the post about the craft fair. Hope to see more posts of your projects soon.
Great post, exactely what I needed to read. I needed that reminder that despite how I see it, 2014 was a great year for me and I am proud of myself
Love this post! I should start doing this too. :)
Thanks for encouraging me to reflect back on how my life over the last year. When you take the time to look back throughout the year, you realize how many life experiences you had and more important, how many people you met. It’s through these experiences and people that bring change. It was great for me to see how the small nursery school which I worked so hard to start ended the year with 11 little graduates, ready to move on to the next step of education. The school is the hope of a new generation born to parents of the so called “lost generation” due to the 20 yr. long civil war. Feeling happy!
“Be proud of your accomplishments, and look at hardships as both opportunities and learning experiences. Know that everything is happening as it should” It takes a mature mind and some level of faith in God to see hardships as an opportunity for growth and to look back and be thankful that you had such difficulk experience what ever it may be.
Oh, I love doing that!
However, your post was still very inspiring to me. It made me see that I am not alone and certainly I am not naive in thinking that each thing that happens and each person that came into our lives teaches us something. 2014 was not so great as I thought it would be, but it made me grow so much as a person. I’m thankful.
Happy New Year!