If you’re like me and get super stoked on new visions, ideas and plans, it’s easy to race into the next thing full speed ahead, heels on fire with the feelings of possibility and hope. But if we race past our chance to digest the experiences we’ve had, we can miss the whole point of racing toward them in the first place.
At a conference I went to recently I was introduced to the idea of a reverse bucket list as a way to practice greater contentment, happiness and gratitude. I love the idea!
Basically, instead of making a bucket full of things you want to accomplish, you create a bucket list of things you’ve already done. So I decided to make a reverse bucket list of all I’ve accomplished, gained and experienced in 2014, and wow, not only did my gratitude levels go way up, but I also got some really clear guidance for this next year.
As I wrote this list I realised “accomplishment” meant anything I felt proud about doing. Some of it was sexy and exciting like teaching retreats in Bali, exploring New Zealand or successfully developing and teaching new programs. Other things were less sexy, but powerful accomplishments non the less, like getting out of a relationship that not longer served me and actively working through some of my long held limiting beliefs.
Once I wrote that list I made another list that simply said, “How did all of these things make me feel?”
I’m reading a fantastic book right now called “The Desire Map” by Danielle Laporte. She says, “Knowing how you want to feel is the most potent clarity you can have. Generating those feelings is the most powerful thing you can do with your life.”
Looking at my 2014 bucket list and really reflecting on how each of those things made me feel clarified how I want to feel, as well as how I don’t want to feel. Words like empowered, connected, inspired, focused, expansive, creative, wiser, discerning popped up…but when I got really honest with my self, so did words like tired, stressed and ungrounded.
My fiery heels are already making plans for 2015, but I’m pulling the reins in a little to ask if these goals I’m racing toward actually generate the feelings and lifestyle I truly long for.
About a year ago I was listening to a lecture my Ayurvedic teacher gave on what’s called the wisdom body in Yoga, the Visnamayakosha. She suggested a simple daily practice to stay in touch with the wisdom body— at the end of each day ask, “What did I learn today, and how can I use that wisdom tomorrow?” I wrote this in big letters on a piece of paper and tacked it to the pin board next to my bed (it always seems to get bigger at just the right moments).
I decided to make one more list for 2014 based on this, “What did I learn in the past year, and how can I use this wisdom in this upcoming year?”
Some of my bullet points include:
- Trust my intuition
- Speak my truth
- Find work/life balance
- Create schedules
- Believe in myself
- Give from my heart
Taking the time to reflect on the past year can reveal what our deeper desires are and if our methods for achieving them actually work or where we can adjust our perspective and actions. It’s a perfect way to prep for intention setting for 2015.
I’m teaching two FREE workshops this Sunday all about how to set new years resolutions from the heart based on yogic principles (see details below). One at 8am at the Lululemon store in Warringah Mall, and one at 2pm at Qi Yoga Freshwater Studio. Hope to see you there! Feel free to drag a friend along if you can, they’re community events so the more the merrier.
If you can’t make it this Sunday, no worries, I’ll be blogging on the topic next week. In the mean time, get out a pen and paper and see what your reverse bucket list for 2014 teaches you!
Make a Reverse Bucket List for 2014
- Make a list off all that you’ve accomplished and experienced in the last year
- Make a list of how all those things made you feel
- Ask, “What did I learn in the past year, and how can I use that wisdom in this upcoming year?”