The secret to happiness lies in living in alignment with our values, and having a good balance in life between work, family, rest and play. As we begin a new year, it is an opportunity to evaluate what is working and what is not, so we can come into better alignment.

To begin this process, it is helpful to take some time to tune into our fears, as guaranteed, our fears are running a lot of our programmed behavior and thinking.

Practice: Sit and take a few minutes to come fully present. Close your eyes. Feel your body. Listen to the sounds around you. Feel the breath at the base of your nostrils and gradually slow your breathing down.

Once you feel calm and present, take your attention to the base of your spine. Keep it there and stay present. Become aware of the flow of your thoughts. You will notice that a thought that is based in fear is followed by a wave of anxiety. Start to note any thoughts that are provoking anxiety. Stay for a few minutes in this process.

Come out of the practice and now write down any thoughts you had that provoked anxiety. Start to unpack them: Are these things you need to do? People you are worried about? Uncomfortable feelings about yourself or others? Reflect. Write down the fears that you are ready to face, and those you can release as not relevant, or not based in reality.

Next take another couple of minutes being present to what is. Bring your attention to your sacral area. Notice any thoughts you have about desires and plans for the New Year: playtime as well as work related. Observe your body physiology to the thought. Does it inspire a good feeling or not?

Come out of the practice and write down your desires and also your body’s reaction to them. Reflect. Write your goals and desires down, those that are in alignment with your inner yearning, those that inspire excitement and inspiration.

Now come back into practice and focus on your navel. Hold your attention there for a few minutes. Notice any thoughts that come around your physical body: fitness goals, relationship with food, and general health. Again, observe the energy that comes with the thought.

Come out of the practice and write down your physical health goals and also your body’s reaction to them. Reflect. Write out a plan that supports your physical health without creating a negative stress response in your body.

Come back into practice and focus on your heart center. Notice any thoughts around your relationships with significant people in your life. Observe your physiological response to these thoughts. Do you feel expanded or contracted?

Come out of the practice and write down your reflections on your relationships. Where do you need to put more attention? Place boundaries? Let go of attachment?

Come back into the practice and focus on your throat. Notice any thoughts connected to your creative expression, your ability to listen, and your communication skills. Observe your physiological reaction to them. Does your throat feel closed or open? Do you feel suppressed or expressed?

Come out of the practice and write down your reflections on how you want to improve your communication skills. How can you become a better listener? A clearer communicator? How easily can you communicate your vision and ideas?

Come back into the practice and focus at your third eye. Open to the flow of ideas that support your deep driving desires. Open to any flash of intuition on which to follow through on. Again, observe when an idea is particularly exciting or invokes discomfort.

Come out of the practice and write down the ideas that felt supported and expansive, and any intuitions you felt.

Come back into the practice. Sit and be present with the totality of you. Listen inwardly. What is it that your soul is asking of you? How can you deepen your connection to the totality of what is? With God? Do you have faith in your capacity to hear your inner guidance? If not, how can your increase your capacity to attune to it? Be spacious in your approach. Try not to force or push, just hold the questions present, be patient, and see what information naturally flows from within.

Come out of the practice and write down all that came clear to you. Take time to overview everything and make a concise, non-overwhelming plan of action. Let this plan include a daily check in time, where you allow yourself to become still and quiet, so the inner voice of your soul can be heard. Here you can be present to when you have resistance to what you know is the beneficial thing to do, and how to constructively move through the resistance.

Change and evolution is a progressive thing. Little by little we bring awareness into our experience of life, we create resonance between the mind/emotions, body and soul. Soon we are operating from a more skilled space and life begins to flow more effortlessly. The adjustments we need to make become smaller and we are quick to see and implement them.