2015-08-30 14.34.58The New Year is still young. It’s still time to set directions, to define your focus, on how you want to grow this year. Last January I have written about Knowledge, Love or Truth, what each of these areas mean to me, and where my focus was last year – truth – and why.

Now, the challenging year 2015 has come to an end. A year with high ups and even deeper downs. 2015 was also a year with great opportunities to grow, in different dimensions. The area of personal growth is, at least for me, the most important one. It is my number one priority. One of those opportunities was to begin a spiritual leadership program that will guide me until 2017. What was initiated within me during the first module in August, can only be described as: “magic happens if you allow magic to happen.” The triggers that were set and the buttons that were pushed moved me forward on my journey. This first module allowed me to achieve a next level of discovering my truth. And then to begin to live my truth. This is a longer journey!

In case, you have read the two blog posts about my Father’s life and death in November, here, and here, I have mentioned the importance of letting things go and forgiveness (for me). The magic thing about this is, that during this leadership course in August forgiving was again a topic, including forgiving ourselves. And without even thinking about what or whom to forgive, all my energy was immediately focused on my Father. Very well invested time. I have seen a few months later, how important this work actually was. For me. And for him.

You may ask the obvious question: what’s your focus this year? Any changes?

I have asked this myself, in a few iterations in December and fast forward to today: It will remain truth, gently surrounded and supported by knowledge and love. I have to move forward along this journey. The direction is the right one with minor adjustments.

What else did I learn from that last year?

  • My vulnerable soul is my gift and my challenge:
    I experienced last year that the process to open my heart over the last couple of years had worked pretty well. Whatever happened last year, also vulnerable situations that have hurt me deeply, didn’t have the power to close my heart again. Observing and understanding myself how I react in such a situation was the first thing to do. Then, I tried everything to really understanding the other person’s decisions, behaviours, and patterns. This was a process during the entire year. I wasn’t always good at it. Not at all. But I was thrown into those situations until I learned what I had to learn. This way, I have built a foundation for myself to move forward, to forgive myself and the involved persons. Not to say, that things were OK, but to close a chapter of a book that has no power to control me anymore. The result should always be: I’m forgiven. And: you are forgiven. Whatever will happen next, there can be a great future with personal growth for all persons involved!
  • Love as my intrinsic quality is the prerequisite to living my truth:
    Only because I have learned that love is my intrinsic quality, only because I have opened my heart, love can flow, love can happen, and I can share it. This way, I am love. This learning helped me not to build attachments anymore. Because love is within me, not derived from somebody else. Love has to be discovered within us, in our hearts. This way, nobody can ever take it away from me. Then, love and freedom are inseparable. And that’s a foundation to grow!
  • Creativity requires love to flow and grow: The more I could open my heart, the more creative I have become. Years ago, when I was still impacted by my parents’ opinion that creativity was not necessary and that I was not creative at all, I, of course, couldn’t manifest creative things. Looking back at this process, opening my heart was a mandatory prerequisite to allowing creativity to come into my heart and to flow out again. Some of the things I write here are written through me. One example of a creative push was to create Peaceful Soulfood, another website that’s focused on the idea that the body is the temple of your soul.
  • Vulnerability is my biggest challenge and my driving force to grow:
    I was running into situations that have hurt me, several times. Simply because I didn’t speak up earlier with the necessary clarity. So, I allowed it to happen. Because I always hoped, it wouldn’t happen again. But it did. Because I did not define boundaries, clearly enough and early enough. Especially as a vulnerable soul, it is, even more, important to speak up early, to define boundaries, to avoid painful situations. A key lesson for me.
  • We are all on the same journey, but in different stages: I learned that I have often ignored the fact that we are all somewhere on our journeys, but at different stages. These various stages trigger different behaviours, and sometimes I was on the wrong end. Yes, I got it. Thanks for the lessons I could learn. Understanding each other, understanding each other’s journey and challenges as well as their current stage is now a key prerequisite for me to adjust my behavior, to respond wisely and in love (my level of aspiration), but living my truth, instead of being forced to react with pain only.
  • Leveraging knowledge: I leverage new knowledge, latest research, and additional techniques and tools that help me along my way. Just as an example, with the various needs for forgiveness this past year, I used all the techniques I have learned, but I was in need to check out additional methods. I did my research, and I found a guided meditation program that not only allowed me to leverage the power of my brain and my heart at the same time, it also helped me to establish a much broader foundation for creating my desired future. Win-win.
  • We need a tribe to grow: Many things can be accomplished alone, but not everything. I honestly believe that at some point in everyone’s life, there is a need to work with a spiritual teacher, the need to work with someone who has gone through it, who understands where and why I’m struggling. I cannot express in words how grateful I am for the gift of working with my spiritual teachers, and of course, for working with a tribe of like-minded people who come from different places and situations, but are committed to supporting each other along their journeys.

P1000307Love and knowledge are both prerequisites to continue discovering my truth.
An exciting journey. I’m looking very much forward to it.

What’s your focus this year?
How did you determine your focus, and why?