Making meaning out of 2017

by | Feb 15, 2018 | Love

It has been a year of great changes -some positive, some extremely difficult.

As we move into these final days of the year, in the relative quiet after the holiday rush, taking a few moments to slow down and reflect can bring meaning to our year.

Reflection provides the opportunity to learn and to make sense of our experiences.

I have found that a few poignant reflection questions can help the process.

Take a quiet moment to reflect on these seven questions. Please take the opportunity to do this. You won’t regret it.

I have answered them for myself below.

  1. What stood out for you this year?  – A happy moment — a moment of change?
  2. What accomplishment are you proud of?
  3. What relationship(s) was strengthened?
  4. What are you grateful for?
  5. What do you want to acknowledge yourself for?
  6. What do you want to acknowledge another for?
  7. What result do you intend to accomplish in 2017?

If you send your answers to me, I will gift  you with an “Intention-Setting Coaching Conversation” to support you to move your intentions into actions in 2018.
It’s never too late to learn and grow!

My own answers:
1.What stood out for you this year? 
– A happy moment – a moment of change?
A happy moment –
For me this was the births of Catherine and Ellie in January. These two beautiful strong vocal young women, born to parents who will raise them in the ways of compassion and caring, are our blessings for 2017. We are proud of them already.
The greatest moment of change for me was the cancer diagnosis in September- followed in rapid succession by surgery in October and then an “all clear” pathology report in November. A whirlwind of thoughts, feelings and events.
The sum total is a feeling of incredible happiness this holiday season – just to be alive, and to be here to

2. What accomplishment are you proud of?
I am proud of my successful transition to my Transitions Coaching Practice
This year I have coached clients as they successfully moved:
Into sustainable healthy intimate relationships – (Including a client in her 40’s who had a long history to “making it on her own’);
Peacefully out of a 30-year marriage (that was no longer serving both partners);
&– Confidently back into the world of professional contributions
(For a physician after a dozen years of focusing on raising children);
– Courageously into changing concepts of work, retirement and contribution
(For Baby Boomers who are designing healthy and thriving “Third Chapters”)
I am also proud that I continue to teach leadership at Boston University, and I continue to provide leadership coaching to leaders in research biotech.
(Coincidentally some of my clients are scientists exploring ways to cure cancer through activating the immune system. They were some of my greatest cheerleaders as I faced my own diagnosis. Their optimism was contagious!)

3. What relationship was strengthened?
The most important relationship that I am continuing to build is with Marc. He was, and is, kind and supportive through everything. He is wonderful to live with and to share my life with.
I am writing this from our condo in Florida where we look out on the Peace River as it flows into the Charlotte Harbor – a large body of water that is protected on all sides by mangroves. We see hawks, eagles, dolphins, and jumping fish from our windows!
I also appreciate the seven grown “children” in our lives.
They and their partners have all been so good to us this year.We are very fortunate to have Aaron, Tennille, Rebecca, Steve, Mike, Sarah, Morgan, Melanie, Ellen, Dan, Eli and Meg in our lives.
And, of course, our grandson Jack, who at 5 is proving to be the smartest of us all.

4. What are you grateful for?
I am grateful for my health, and my body’s ability to come back one more time.
I am forever grateful that I walk, swim, bicycle, hug (!) and do yoga.
Hooray for keeping moving!
I am grateful for my parents, Norman and Eleanor, who always only wanted the best for me. I hope you can see that my life and my children’s lives are testimony to your commitment, your caring and your aspirations for us. 
5.What do you want to acknowledge yourself for?For keeping myself balanced and forward thinking, even in the midst of change.
6. What do you want to acknowledge another for? I want to acknowledge Marc, for loving me and standing by me, no matter what. (I just acknowledged him for that.)

7. What result do you intend to accomplish in 2017?  
I want to learn how to relax. I intend to balance meaningful contribution and happy relationships, with time “off”. I’m not sure what that means, but I am intending to learn it.  I am going to start tomorrow morning with a Silent Meditation at the Yoga Sanctuary near our home here in Punta Gorda, Florida.
I wish all of you and your loved ones 
joy, happiness, and health in the new year.
Please don’t hesitate to be in touch if you are going through a transition.
If you, or someone you know, would like a chance to reflect and gain insight about your next steps, a chapter you are closing, or a passion you want to ignite, please contact me a joan@joanbragar.com for a complimentary coaching conversation.

 Peaceful and Happy New Year to all,
Joan

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