January 3, 2024

Let this be Your Year to Slay: 2024 Year of the Dragon.

 

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“I am an unquenchable fire,
The center of all energy,
The stout heroic heart.
I am truth and light,
I hold power and glory in my sway.
My presence
Disperses dark clouds.
I have been chosen
To tame the Fates.” 

 ~ Theodora Lau

~

I’ve always had a keen interest in the zodiac, Chinese zodiac, and horoscopes.

I’m not fanatical, nor am I an expert, but I do find it all incredibly interesting. I have a friend who does birth charts and they are intriguing and startlingly accurate.

I believe it’s another tool in our toolbox to guide and support us in our lives. I respect those who don’t share this interest, but you can’t deny that there are just some things in life that are unexplainable. Some things in life that are far greater than us. And some things in life that are indeed magical. Isn’t life better with some magic?

Whatever zodiac sign you are, let this year be a year to slay. A year of growth and perhaps healing and change. A year to love yourself a little more. Wondering how to do this?

Here are my tips to slay:

Discover Your Purpose

Some of you may know what your purpose is. Others may be floundering to understand what their purpose in life is. And some are living someone else’s purpose rather than their own.

Your purpose is so much more than what you enjoy. It’s so much more than your job and even your family (although these can definitely be drivers). It’s your reason for being. It’s what makes you feel alive. It comes from a force within you, a knowing. It comes from your soul.

Some of us don’t discover our real purpose until later in life and some never actually find it. I found mine off the back of one of the hardest times in my life. I found it by spending time in solitude, being introspective and reflective. I found it by allowing myself to be completely vulnerable. And I found it when I was finally brave enough to stare fear and my truth in the eye and step off the cliff of my comfort zone.

If you haven’t found yours yet, let this be the hope and drive you need.

Pursue Your Passions

Your passions are different to your purpose. Your passions are what you love to do and your purpose is who you are. What are your passions? Whatever they are, do a little every day. Find the time in every single day to do something you love. It’s how we bring more joy to our lives.

We all have commitments and sometimes our lives are far too hectic and we feel we are on a hamster wheel. Exhausted. Even lost and miserable. And it’s because we don’t prioritise what makes us happy. We don’t allow ourselves time for the things that we love. That energise us. Refresh us.

I know some of you will be thinking, “I don’t have time,” “I’m too tired,” or you even feel selfish pursuing your own things. The biggest lesson I’ve learnt is if we don’t actively make time for the things that start our fire, that fire will burn out and leave us empty. Love yourself enough to do something you love every day.

Stop Mindlessly Scrolling

We all do it, but it’s honestly such a time waster. And even though we can somewhat control the content we see, sometimes rubbish still gets through. There’s all the changes in algorithms that, in so many ways, have ruined social media because we don’t actually see a lot of what our friends post.

Aside from all of this, it’s really just another means of distraction. Avoidance. Feeling bored? Scroll. Feeling stressed? Scroll. Not wanting to feel? Scroll. It takes time away from our passions. From being productive. From connection. Most of all, it takes time away from just being. Sitting with ourselves. Feeling what needs to be felt. It’s just another unhealthy coping mechanism. Make a promise to yourself to commit to change. Start small and stick to it. Fill the void with a passion that brings you joy.

Self-Care

Self-care means different things to different people, but the reality is, far too many of us do not practise regular self-care. It should form a part of every day and something that becomes routine but not a chore. Is it your daily walk? Your morning meditation? A cold shower perhaps? Self-care should be healthy for mind, body, and soul. It should be calming, grounding, or even bring you some peace, even if just momentarily. I know when I slip out of my self-care routine, I feel the negative consequences. And when I regularly practise my self-care, I feel far more nurtured and my overall well-being is far better. Without self-care, we cannot create an environment conducive to healing, learning, or growing. We cannot expect to be our best self if we are unprepared to focus on our well-being.

Understand Energy

There’s so much talk out there about energy. Masculine energy. Feminine energy. Positive energy. Negative energy. What I’m talking about here is the energy we emit. We are energetic beings. We give off a particular energy and we take on others’ energy. If we listen closely, our bodies will tell us more about another person than their words ever will. It’s that gut feeling we get. It’s that excitement or happiness we feel around certain people and that drained or anxious feeling we get around others. It’s learning to protect our energy, when there are people sucking us dry to refill their own energy sources. It’s understanding that the way we think and the way we feel affects our energy.

Think of your energy like an echo; what you put out, you will get back. Learning to elevate your energy by discovering your purpose, pursuing your passions, and taking time for self-care will have you radiating in a whole different way.

Walk Away from People and Things that No Longer Serve You

I know this can be so damn hard. We often stay with people and in places far longer than we should, mostly due to fear. Of course there are sometimes other factors, especially when we are talking about relationships. Ending my 25-plus-year marriage was heartbreaking and I continually second guessed myself. It was a terribly dark period of my life and it’s taken a good few years to process, but I knew deep in my heart our time together was over. I was stagnant and lost. I had no idea who I was anymore, and I knew the environment wasn’t conducive for me to do the work on myself. I walked away.

Through the darkness and blinding f*cking pain I found myself. My purpose. My passions. I opened my mind and I’ve been on a journey of learning that has landed me in this far more self-aware space. Sometimes the only thing we can do to save ourselves is walk away.

Stop Listening to Self-Proclaimed Experts

I mean this in the most respectful way, but nobody knows what’s best for you, better than you. Social media in 2024 is such a weird place, filled with so many “experts” that woke up one day with an opinion and decided there opinion is the only way. Time and time again, I see these videos boldly proclaiming this or that and assuming we humans are all exactly the same. And they get away with it because so many vulnerable people are seeking validation outside of themselves. They are searching for things that they need to look inside of themselves for.

Nobody and I mean nobody should be telling another person what they should be feeling. What they should be doing. How they should be behaving. I’m a therapist and I hold space for people and provide tools to help support them on their journey. But I make it perfectly clear I am not an expert on another person’s life. How can I be? I have not experienced their childhood. I have not lived their life. Whilst I’m empathetic and compassionate and I have endured my own pain, I am not them. I have never been them. And I will never be them. They are the expert on their life, and I’m merely a guide.

So in 2024, stop believing another person knows you or your life better than you do. Remember any “advice” another person gives is through their lens, which is clouded by their own life experience and their own often unhealthy beliefs. It’s their perception. Listen to yourself. You know deep down what you need.

Open Your mind

I say this as a person who is open-minded, and I do realise and respect that not everyone is as open-minded as me. But choosing to be less judgmental and more accepting has been one of my biggest areas of growth. For me personally, I find it difficult to connect with closed-minded people. Those who judge and have an inability to accept that they can change.

I believe we can all change if we choose to do the work. In fact, I know we can. We are such small specks in the scheme of things. We have so much to learn. Yet there are people who would rather argue, bully, and judge others rather than concede they’re insecure and their ego is in the way.

My inner contentment grew as my mind opened. When I understood that my view is simply that, mine, and everyone has their own, and that’s okay. When I lost the need to fit into ridiculous societal standards and boxes I allowed others to encourage me to go in.

When our mind opens, we begin to explore a world we didn’t even know existed.

I’ve been thinking about this Year of the Dragon and I come into this year with likening my inner self to the dragon. She’s the fire in me. She’s the courage. She’s the vulnerability. She’s the strength and resilience. She’s protective. She’s a little bit tenacious. She’s ambitious. She is part untamed. She easily transforms. She is my power and my gift. And just like the dragon, when she trusts, she is forever loyal.

Most of all she is my inner magic.

Trust your inner dragon to guide you. Let her look fear in the eye and slay. She’s in all of us, if we stop and listen with an open heart. If we are willing to see her and learn from her. She will always have our back.

~

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