While you’re gearing up for the New Year, I have two suggestions to help you achieve your potential.

  1. Know Yourself

How do you feel about New Year resolutions?

Your answer could help you the underlying trait that determines how you respond to social expectations and whether you achieve your personal goals, according to author Gretchen Rubin.

Based how you respond to outer and inner expectations, you could be one of:

According to Rubin, our preferred tendency is hardwired at birth, and not dependent on upbringing, circumstances or people we interact with. And there’s no best or worst tendency. Rather, the happiest, healthiest and most productive people, according to Rubin, are those who’ve figured out how to harness the strengths and counteract the weaknesses of their tendency.

I am still early into her book The Four Tendencies, but the Questioner in me paused – why don’t we all strive to meet our inner expectations? So, I challenge you to be attentive to your inner expectations this upcoming year. How do YOU want to feel? What do YOU want? Why?


Know yourself some more by starting with why

Starting to pay attention is the first step in realizing the bigger desires and thrills that await you. However, if you’re not sure what your expectations or goals are, I might suggest you looking at Simon Sivek’s 5-minute version of Starting with Why. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IPYeCltXpxw.

Sivek invites us to think about what motivates us and how we want to achieve it, before we think of what we want to do. That way, we’re clear why we want to embark on a new job, business, project or relationship, and whether it is congruent with who we are.

Graphic Courtesy: https://blog.thundafund.com/2014/06/23/the-golden-circle/

I came across Sivek’s talk in 2012 and use it to continually ask myself – Do the things and relationships I pursue trully align with my values?

Ask yourself. Sometimes, the answer will help simplify your life and create room for more life-affirming gifts to arrive. And clarify what to focus on this upcoming year.

  1. Re-new your physical space

While you assess how and who you spend your time with, I also invite you to consider the space you’re spending time in. It could be your home or the place you work or volunteer at.

Physical space can have a huge impact on our emotional well-being. Too much stuff can clutter our mind from achieving what we set out to do – whether it is for ourselves or a commitment you’ve made to a volunteer position or job.

I am sensitive to the arrangement of items in a room and how a clutter-free room supports me not only in completing tasks but also creating space for new ideas to come through.

Marie Kondo in her book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, has a two-step approach. First, put your hands on everything you own. Ask yourself if it sparks joy, and if it doesn’t, thank it for its service and get rid of it. Second, once only your most joy-giving belongings remain, put every item in a place where it’s visible, accessible, and easy to enjoy or use. There are several professional organizers who have much to say, if you just type declutter in your internet search engine.

I also enjoy playing with colour, whether it is that of my clothes, accessories or the spaces I enjoy spending time in. Here’s some suggestions on how to use colour to enhance your mood.

For someone trying to balance art and function in my life, I like the challenge of finding a hand-crafted object that brings me joy. Don’t resist seeking out an artisan for a project. They’re usually thrilled to indulge your request, even seeking out scrap materials to create you a unique, sustainable piece of furniture or fixture for you at a great price!

Color-Mood Chart courtesy of http://surripui.net


One of my favourite places to sit in my home is under this custom-made lamp courtesy of High Country Stained Glass in Kamloops. They indulged my love for dragonflies and turquoise.

In a nutshell, don’t be afraid to inquire or enquire! A lot more can be realized when you are more intentional.

Wishing you a purpose-driven 2018!

By Rashmi Narayan
December 2017