In Europe—and Russia so I heard from one of my clients yesterday—the end of an old year and the beginning of a new year is seen as a more important celebration than in North America. Everybody stays up, and celebrates with family and friends. You think back to the old year and look forward to the new, setting intentions of what you want to experience.
When I was a girl, we used to do “Bleigießen” (“Lead pouring”) for New Year’s Eve in Germany. A small amount of lead was melted in a tablespoon (by heating it up with a lighter underneath the spoon) and then poured into a bucket of water. It would harden into different shapes to give you a preview of what to expect in the New Year. For example, if the lead formed a ball, it meant “luck will roll your way”. Superstition? Or is it maybe a way to talk about your dreams with your loved ones and to set intentions of manifesting more consciously in the New Year?
In our family, our favourite New Year’s Eve tradition is to open our Gratitude Jar. The jar is filled with little notes about the year that is just ending. Whenever something good happens to one of us, something we felt excited about or grateful for, we put a note in the jar to hold onto those memories and good feelings. On Dec. 31, everybody has a chance to read out their own notes to everybody else and re-experience their happy moments. It’s a way to look back at a year of plenty, an abundance of joy, happiness and dreams which came true.
Another tradition my children like is to take a suitcase and run around the block or around the outside of the house to set the intention of travelling in the year to come. I believe we first came across this fun custom speaking to a Mexican friend of ours. It has us laughing and envisioning the marvellous places we want to visit in the future.
Have you ever wondered why we kiss the person closest to us once the clock strikes 12:00? It has to do with the custom passed down through the ages to kiss the person we hope to keep kissing in the New Year.
In different parts of the world, food is used in a symbolic fashion, usually for food to be abundant again in the new year. In Dutch, Belgian and North German homes, fritters made out of flour, eggs, and milk, called Oliebollen or Ölkugeln are served. In Swiss homes, dollops of whipped cream, symbolizing the richness of the year to come, are dropped on the floors.
A spiritual way to end the old year and begin the new is to write a letter to the Universe. This letter is written as if you are already looking back onto the coming year, so for example this year’s letter would be written looking back onto 2015 at the end of December 2015. In the letter you give thanks and feel gratitude for all the health, happiness, prosperity, growth and wonderful manifestations of the year.
THEME OF THE NEW YEAR
My friend Grace Attard raised an interesting question on Facebook by sharing her theme for 2014 (“easy manifestation and allowing”) and her new theme for 2015 (“all in” and committing to the work required). Someone else mentioned “letting go” as their theme for the New Year.
What is your theme for 2015? What are you focusing on?
My theme is “creativity”; meaning handling life’s challenges creatively. We are not in control of what other people bring into our life but we are in control of what we want to “cook” from the “ingredients” which show up.
What do all these traditions and end of year reflections have in common? They are about gratitude and focusing on what we want. They help us to be thankful and give us clarity about our goals and desires. Energetically, we are getting ready to live and create more purposefully and in line with what makes our soul sing.
An old year ends, a new one starts, and we are bringing all those beautiful memories of 2014 with us as we continue to create and celebrate life. We carry feelings of gratefulness and excitement in our hearts. Here is to another amazing year! Cheers!
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