A simple strategy to help you align your plans and intentions for 2015 with your heart and with your soul.


If you haven’t had a chance to dream up your new year yet, here is a simple exercise to help you sort out what it is you desire in 2015. I actually do this not only once a year but once a month to ensure that I am aligned with my values and goals throughout the year.

Find some undisturbed time and get comfy. Have your favorite cup of tea or coffee, get a notebook and some pencils, and just relax.

Close your eyes and let your thoughts wander. Bring back the year that just passed: 2014. What kind of a year was it for you? What did you experience? What opportunities did it bring, what losses?

Let images come up, emotions, thoughts, reflections, tears, laughter, fear, pain, and happiness. Breathe, relax, and tune into your body while you revisit the past twelve months. Realize how certain memories make you feel, in your heart, in your body, and in your soul.

Open your eyes.

Take your notebook and write “What Worked in 2014” on the first page.

Jot down all the activities, events, and experiences – external and internal – that expanded you and made you feel alive in 2014. I put down hiking, for example, because it was the one activity that helped me heal my back last year. Getting in touch with nature also made me feel happier and more grounded.

Other items that made my what worked list were my hair (I liked it most of the year), finishing, publishing, and launching my book, mood control (yay), visiting my family in Germany, reconnecting with long lost friends, eating healthy, and using Elance to find an editor and designer, among others.

Anything, big or small, goes on this list and you may use as many pages as you need. The only requirement is that whatever you write down makes you feel happy and brings you alive.

Next, start a page that says “What Didn’t Work in 2014”.

Here, you record what brought you displeasure, caused you pain, or simply didn’t happen. Not publishing my book on time, for example, putting my foot in my mouth more often than was good for me (one of my many weaknesses), getting distracted, spending money on a press release I didn’t need, and not being consistent with my blog posts were a few of the items that went on my what didn’t work list.

If you feel ambivalent about some things in 2014, start a list that says “What May or May Not Have Worked in 2014″. I have a few items on that list that I don’t know whether to keep or to lose. Time will show.

Now comes the fun part. Start a new page and label it “My Goals and Intentions for 2015”.

Knowing what brought you joy – and what didn’t – will allow you to set intentions and goals for 2015 that are more aligned with your heart and your soul. Simply tune into the activities, events, and feelings that worked well last year and do more of them.

For me, I want to expand my book launch into different cities, have book parties, and translate ALIVE into German – so I can publish it in Germany and go on a German book tour!

I also want to continue hiking, design a new product, deepen my self-love, do art, and learn a new skill. Not being consistent with my blog posts has caused me some pain in 2014 – so, I want to get back on track with writing since I know it makes me happy.

Once you have written your lists and set your goals, there is one last thing you can do.

Find Your Theme for 2015

Looking over your notes and tuning into your intentions for 2015, can you detect a theme? Is there a word or a sensation that wants to emerge? Maybe your goals strike a certain note or fulfill a specific desire. Maybe you realize that you want to be more courageous, or maybe you have been overly busy and your theme has to do with relaxing more and enjoying life.

In 2015, I want to be more “badass”. It’s part of who I am and there is no good in hiding it. When I was writing my what worked and what didn’t work lists in a wonderful little coffee house in Albuquerque I came across a local city guide advertising a new book called You Are a Badass. That sealed it.

Please share your ideas, intentions, and themes for 2015 with us. I’d love to find out what you are up to in this splendid New Year!

As always, thank you for reading,


P.S.  My daughter and I have created a challenge to do something exciting every day, which keeps us looking for new adventures. Do you want to join us?


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