Monday, 29 December 2014

Sink or Swim? How to Handle the New Year.

At this time of year I feel like Kate Winslet's character from the movie, Titanic.  It's that moment when Rose and Jack are clinging to the railing of the doomed ship, with seconds to reflect, before being sucked into the icy depths.

The New Year feels similar.  I'm clinging on to the old year, full of its adventures, loves and losses and wondering if I'll survive what's to come.

Just like Rose, I hold my breath and kick like crazy for the surface.  What I find each year never fails to amaze me.  I learn new lessons, meet new mentors and discover a little bit more about myself with each passing moment.

To be able to cling on so hard to the back of my ship I need to add a little structure into my life.  Writing my book, How I Changed My Life in a Year taught me the importance of planning.  Nothing changes unless you make it happen, and to do this you need to sort through your thoughts and catalogue them in the best way for you.

Every new year I ask myself two questions:

1.  Why do I kick so hard to reach the surface?

The simple answer - Because I'm not done yet!

Surviving a life changing event opens up a hidden part of the brain.  I lived my life as a wife, mother, friend and daughter; never doing anything special or giving 100% to my life.  Then my life fell apart, slowly at first, then picking up momentum until I hit the bottom of a huge dark hole. 

At that moment, the hidden part of my brain woke up, and I began to find the courage to crawl out of the hole.  On my journey, I met others who had either reached the top or were ahead of me on the ladder of life.  They taught me so much.  Of course, I made mistakes - tons of them - but each one added another piece of the puzzle.  So, I say it again - I'm not done yet!

2.  How do I arrange my thoughts/ideas and achieve what I set out to do?

How do I get it all done?  I use numerous self-help tools, all of which I've discovered along my new path.  Never has the phrase, 'when the student is ready, the teacher appears,' been so relevant.

I'm going to cover each of these topics in more detail throughout 2015, but this is the list of tools I use regularly to sort my jumble of thoughts and overflowing ideas, and remain balanced. 
  • Meditation
  • Reiki Healing
  • Writing in my Journal
  • Blogging
  • Vision Boards (read about making your own here)
  • Self-Help Books - I am going to be reviewing a selection of self-help books over on my WordPress site next year. 
  • Self-Love (Tough One!)
That last one is a toughie.  We often have a problem when it comes to loving who we are.  It's one of my biggest lessons.  Putting yourself our there as a writer also forces you to face every fear known to man, especially the fear of being accepted.

I received a review recently on Amazon that said my book was all 'Me, Me, Me'.  The review made me second guess myself momentarily, but then I remembered what I had survived and that 'my' lessons - good and bad - served as a helping hand for others.

I, therefore, make no apology for my book, my blog or my life - it is about me; the achievements and the failures, the struggles and the celebrations.  That's why I kick for the surface, and that's why I make plans and aim to achieve so much.  So many people helped me on my road to recovery, and now it's time to pay it forward.

On New Year's Eve, let's all cling on to our rail and just before we get sucked into 2015, let's reflect on everything we've achieved.  Think about all the high points, and all the lessons we learned from the low points.  Remember our loved ones and imagine the beautiful relationships that are still to come.

As you kick for the surface remember to hold on tight to your dreams, goals, resolutions or whatever you choose to call them, but most importantly - don't let go!

'Happy New Year to you all and may 2015 see all your dreams come true.' 

I'd love to hear what plans you have for the New Year, please share them in the comments, and maybe your idea will inspire someone else.

With hugs and kisses
Shelley x



  1. Happy New Year and thanks for sharing your inspirational thoughts.

    1. Thanks Angela. Happy New Year to you and yours x

  2. Happy New Year Shelley. I look forward to your inspirational 2015 blogs.

    Well what would the book be about if it wasn't me, me, me? It was YOUR experiences of YOU fighting back and how YOU did it - to inspire other people.

    Good luck with all your projects x

    1. Thank you for your kind words Sue. Happy New Year :)