It is the Lunar New Year and Chinese Year of the Wood Horse. The spirit of the horse is the Chinese people’s ethos, making everlasting efforts to improve. These ten steps will help you gallop into the new year prepared to make it your best year ever!

1. Clean it up – Let go of the old so there is room for the new. After the holidays it seems we may have acquired more, “things” than we need. Try to simplify your life by donating those things that no longer serve you, decluttering will help you clear your mind. The energy of your surroundings have a deep effect on how your life unfolds.

2. Set Goals – Goal setting is one of the best tools to help you become clear about what you want in your life. Start by making a vision board.  Journaling your goals and affirming them through meditation and prayer is also a great tool to help evolve your life in the direction you want it to go. Make one master year goal list, along with weekly lists throughout the year.

3. Let go of old beliefs – See where your life is inharmonious and ask yourself if you have an outdated belief system that has you holding onto someone or something that no longer serves you. Sometimes we can trick ourselves into believing that a toxic relationship or job is tolerable, or even joyous at times. Be aware of unproductive, beliefs that we hold within ourselves, for whatever reason. Hold onto what empowers you and leave the rest behind.

4. Start a new practice –  Whether it be yoga, meditation, church, or painting. Start a new practice in your life. Something that uplifts and inspires you. Do it at least six times before you decide if it is for you or not.  If you decide it isn’t for you, then move onto another practice. Continue giving yourself a consistent, creative outlet throughout the whole year.

5. Promise to love yourself  – This one is huge! The other night while I was having a talk with my son, I decided to take my own advice. He is starting to notice girls and he is truly smitten with a particular one. He has a courageous heart and it dawned on me that eventually he will have his heart-broken. I told him that he will like or love many people is his life, but the love he has for himself is most important and should be unswayed by anyone who comes and goes from his life.

Truly loving yourself through the ebb and flows of life allows other loving souls to come into your life. Loving yourself creates an energy of respect and gives others the courage to do the same.

6. Let go – Let go of that one habit that you know is not good for you but you keep doing it anyway. Blaming and justifying it in your head will only make you feel worse afterwards. Choose one thing to stop, or let go of, and seek help to do so. Reach out and ask for help. You don’t need to do it alone. There is a whole world waiting to serve and help you, and in turn, you may inspire and help change live’s as well.

7. Charity – Commit to giving back this year. One of the most rewarding and fulfilling things a human being can do is give their time and love to others. It could be a family friend who needs help in some way or even volunteering at a soup kitchen or adopting a pet. Extend yourself and reach out to others in need. Being selfless is one of the greatest gift we can give to the world.

8. Forgive – One of the hardest things in life is to forgive someone who has hurt you. Choose one person that has hurt you the most and begin to do the work. I like to imagine them on a stage, receiving all their blessings and wishes that they have ever asked for. This can be very difficult at first, but do the visualization and the positive feelings will eventually follow. Granting true forgiveness to someone, who we feel doesn’t deserve it can be our greatest work. I like to think of it as an opportunity to create more light in my life.

9. Let go of fear – Fear is crippling. It prevents you from achieving your ultimate happiness and life’s purpose. Put fear in your pocket and courage in your heart. Every day  you have another opportunity to let go of fear and live in love. You can’t live in both. Consciously begin to ask yourself in every situation if it is fear or love, then let go of fear and get back to love. All we need is love, the rest will follow.

10. Find out your Chinese astrology sign 2014 is the year of the horse and that just so happens to be my year! The Year of the Wood Horse is a time of fast victories, unexpected adventure, and surprising romance. It is an excellent year for travel, and the further away and off the beaten path the better. This year, energy is high and production is rewarded. Decisive action, without procrastination brings victory. You must act fast in a Horse year. If you are not 100% secure about a decision, then don’t do it. Events move so quickly in a Horse year that you don’t want to gallop off in the wrong direction.  

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