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Reflections on the old, inspirations for the new

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By Johanne Bouchard Explore Big Sky Business Columnist

The holidays are a special time to step back and reflect on the past year. We can be inspired by what we can manifest in the new year, to have and to live the life we want. Reflecting is a way to nurture yourself by looking at what works in your life; determining if you’re taking anything – or anyone – for granted; and acknowledging what you did well, whom you love and what you love. Celebrate all the positives that exist in your life as you welcome in the new year.

It’s helpful to examine the different aspects of your life to be clear about whether you’re experiencing the life you want, doing what you love, being conscious of your health, being a good partner, a caring daughter or son, and a trusted friend. Take the time to acknowledge if you’re tapping into your potential and feeling fulfilled in your career, and in the things you love.

Life is unpredictable and doesn’t follow a straight path. There are potentially painful situations along the way, and we need to reflect on how we navigate through them. Ask yourself whether the negatives have weighed you down, blocked you from success and are starting to define you.

I invite you to join me in this exercise. Get out some paper or a small journal and jot down some thoughts about the past year. Find your favorite chair or corner of the sofa, wear your most comfortable clothing, grab your favorite snack, and take quality time to be with yourself.

Answer each question from five perspectives: at home; at work; in leisure time; for yourself; and for your health/body.

What did I love the most in my life this past year?

What do I want to continue to have, and do, going into the new year?

What was most challenging for me this past year?

What do I want to change in my life in the coming year?

Praise yourself for what you did well, and be inspired by the positive things that you can manifest in the coming year. Don’t be too hard on yourself, but take the time to pick one thing that you want to change. When you do make that change, there will be more positive things in your life and for yourself down the road. If you’re stressed at work – or in your business – think about what causes your stress and which changes you can address to make the situation better for yourself and the people around you.

I wish you a wonderful holiday season and a very fulfilling new year. Bonne Année!

Johanne Bouchard is a leadership advisor to CEOs, executives and entrepreneurs, as well as an expert in corporate board composition and dynamics. An avid skier, Bouchard and her husband have a second home in Big Sky. Visit her blog at

The Outlaw Partners is a creative marketing, media and events company based in Big Sky, Montana.

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