Happy New Year!
This is the first Tune Up Tip of 2014 and I am excited! For me, the New Year is always a time of great hope for new dreams to actualize in the coming year.
What are you creating and hoping for in this new year?
And what dreams are you holding on to from 2013 or years prior that may not have come true?
You may not realize this, but mourning dreams that didn’t come to fruition is just as important as working hard to make your current dreams come true. And these two processes are intimately connected. Unrealized dreams and feelings of regret take up space in your mind and your heart that could be better used for what you are currently creating.
It’s through this mourning and releasing that you are able to let go of what you wished would have happened in order to recognize, embrace and celebrate what you have now.
When I first met my husband, Vic I was enamoured. It had always been one of my dreams to meet an amazing man, get married and have a family. Vic was talented, kind, smart and handsome so the idea of creating a human together was definitely part of my plan. But the Universe had a different plan. Vic was older, widowed and already had three teenage sons who needed our love and attention. In time it became clear that having a child together was not going to happen.
This was hard for me. It didn’t fit into my dream, precisely as I planned. But I was in love with Vic and the boys and my life with them. I was happy but conflicted. Was I being ungrateful or greedy to still want a biological child? Did I really want that or was it just what I always dreamt would happen? Luckily, I had an amazing therapist who helped me sort out my feelings and encouraged me to mourn and honor my dream of having a child (the old fashioned way) so I could be present to the dream I was living. She encouraged me to do the below release exercise.
Journal Release Exercise:
1. Write a list of dreams that never came true.
2. Next to each dream, write why you are sad, what you feel you missed and what you gained by that dream not coming true.
3. Then burn what you have written someplace safe. As you burn, intentionally release any feelings of regret or sadness so you can make space for new dreams and the dream you may already be living.
Once, I allowed myself the time and space to honor my sadness of not having a biological child, I felt relieved. The process was cathartic, painful and liberating. Once I came out on the other side I felt deep gratitude for exactly the way my family came into being. I no longer felt conflicted about anything, just grateful. I remain deeply in love with my life.
This exercise is not to encourage you to give up on your dreams. It is to help you see that it is ok for dreams to change or that things turning out differently than you planned does not have to mean failure. Course correcting and reframing are a part of being flexible and healthy in this unpredictable life journey.
I invite you consider doing the Release exercise regarding any dream that never manifested in your life. Please share with me in the comments below what those dreams were and how this process has helped you release in order to more fully celebrate all that you have now.
This process can be deep and takes time. So be gentle and loving with yourself and as always, take care of you
Love Love Love