2016 is going to be a very interesting year!

Last year we completed an eight year cycle of releasing what we’d brought forward from our pasts – from childhood and past lives. It was difficult, to say the least. 2016 brings a new seven-year cycle of embracing the Aquarian Age energy and running forward with less karmic baggage. The challenges may feel the same, but there is a vast difference between being behind changes as they lead us – or sometimes push us against our will – and being at the forefront of them in harmony with the energy.

It will be very clear in 2016 who is behind the energy and who is in front of it.

The challenges of 2016 start right off the bat with a Mercury retrograde that runs from January 5 through January 25. Even though tradition says we make resolutions and start new ways of thinking and behaving in January, the retrograde makes the entire month impossible to accomplish that. Watch for especially difficult times January 5 through 8 and then again January 21 through 25.

As always, look out for the typical issues: miscommunication, travel glitches, automobile and electronic repairs, and please avoid signing any legal documents or initiating anything in court. As there are four Mercury retrogrades this year instead of the usual three (January’s plus April 28 through May 22, August 30 through September 21 and December 19 into 2017), expect issues from this last year that we thought we conquered to come up again just to make sure we got them. Like a pop quiz after you’ve already taken the final exam.

Save the expectation of new energy when the energy is actually new. That happens on Monday, February 8 when we start the Chinese New Year of the Monkey. This leaves January feeling more like a clean up month for the previous year than the new beginning we’ve always believed it to be.

Instead of making resolutions in January to change something about ourselves and our world, how about trying something different? If the personal energy we send out is what we get back – projecting love brings love, projecting want or need brings more wanting or needing – why not first try to be very clear about exuding our own positive, self-empowered awareness?

Resolutions are fine but rarely last because they are usually “out there”. They’re not an inner level shift in our core, so we get back the same old stuff without change no matter how clear we are in making the resolution in the first place. We get discouraged and the wave of opportunity we resolved to accomplish gets mired in disappointment.

So start the year by looking at yourself differently. If you honestly see and truly appreciate yourself, the change comes from within you. Then everything around you shifts automatically, including being able to accomplish what resolutions you wanted to make.

Start with this idea, which might be familiar to anyone who has tried my Love Spell. Make a list of forty things that are your positive attributes and that you like about yourself. Do this in first person and present tense (“I am”, “I have”, “I do”). Do it without using negatives (instead of “I don’t smoke” write “I am healthy without smoking” or “I am smoke free”). Avoid using the words “want”, “need”, “wish” and “desire” as they negate the positive energy you put out.

This might seem an easy concept, but finding forty things you really like about yourself may be more difficult than you think. This list encompasses everything you are – from having a great smile to knowing your concept of God. So dig deep and become consciously aware of how wonderful you are.

Here are some examples from my list:

  • I am very smart.
  • I listen well.
  • I am creative.
  • I am kind.
  • I am sensitive to others’ energy.
  • I laugh easily and well.
  • I am good in an emergency.
  • I know my limits and when/how to honor them.

It’s important to write the list down instead of having ideas about yourself in your mind. Your conscious and subconscious need to see the words on paper and hear their vibrations when spoken for this to have an impact.

Make the list neat on clean paper and keep it beside your bed. Read it to yourself aloud first thing in the morning before you get out of bed and last thing at night before you go to sleep. Reading it in the morning sets your mind up to go through the day as your best self. It’s the same concept as hearing a song first thing in the morning that then haunts you all day. Reading it at night keeps your positive attributes echoing through your subconscious while you sleep and dream.

Both of these actions remind you of your personal strength and purpose so they can consciously become second nature. Many times our nature (first and second) has adapted so completely to the demands of people and society over the years, we’ve forgotten who we are. This exercise helps us remember.

The best time to start this for the new year is before sleep on the night of February 7. Do it every day/night until you feel a shift within, then keep it up so you remember. If you skip a session, start the next cycle. While it is accumulative in its building of energy for awareness, accidentally missing a morning or evening will not negate its power. Just know that if you have a hard time reading the list regularly, it speaks more about fear of change and holding onto past hurts than just being forgetful.

I shared this concept with a client who had spent months looking for a job. She wrote the list of forty things she would recognize and like about herself if she met herself in a job interview. She read the list aloud in the morning and evening. About Day 10 of reading the list every day, she went to an interview – one of many she’d had. While she was talking with the HR director, she consciously felt all her positive attributes from the list. It shifted how she conducted herself, how her energy presented itself, and she got the job.

That’s what this is trying to accomplish for the new year: shifting how we see ourselves which then shifts the energy we exude. If we project more of our positive attributes, we attract the positive in people and situations who match our energy.

This also works to help with difficulty in a relationship or situation. A list can be used to see any person or situation differently to change the energy of it. And that’s the key here: when you look at and understand someone or something differently, you change what’s going on between you. No one can change another, but altering how you look at a person or situation improves the energy to allow all blocks, resentment, unfairness, or anger to fall away and be replaced with understanding.

In making a list about another person, say an estranged husband who is being difficult in making custody decisions, see forty positive attributes about him even if you’d like to strangle him. Shift the energy between the two of you with things like:

  • Paul is a giving man (even if he is not giving to you right now).
  • Paul is strong in his love of family (even if that love is only given to your shared child).
  • Paul is a safe driver (give kudos where kudos are due).

If you need a list about a situation, say issues within a job, list forty positive things, such as:

  • My job gives me financial stability (even if it’s not what you feel you deserve).
  • My job puts incompetent people in my path so I may learn patience.
  • My job is only ten minutes from home.

It’s easy to stand in anger or resentment when it has been earned. So it might be hard to find that many positive attributes about a person or situation that is difficult, but that’s the point. There are always positives in any negative. The only way I know to shift any of the difficulty, including how we perceive ourselves or anyone or anything around us, is to truly look at ourselves first in a positive way. It changes everything, starting at our core.

May this year bring huge and wonderful changes for us all.

I offer this with love and gratitude…

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