The year is winding down. Are you feeling the pull to review and set intentions?

It’s getting darker and darker here in the north in this last month before the Solstice.

This is the time when your thoughts and your heart may turn to setting intentions for the year to come.

2015 year-end review. Completion. Release. Intention.

I’ve always thought that it’s more than just “resolutions” that are needed to make effective and lasting changes. I’ve written about resolutions and how by themselves they just don’t have enough energy attached to do the job. As you can see when you compare the crowds in the gym or at your local 12-step meeting in early January and a month later. Yup, resolutions in action. You can read a few of the articles I’ve written about this very thing here and here and here.

There’s so much to see every time you look back

  • You see and celebrate the good stuff: everything you completed and every risk you took.
  • Then you can assess what didn’t get completed: What needs to change to make this happen?
  • What needs to be released?

Once you have done this completion and release work, then your intentions (and resolutions) have a much stronger foundation and a much better chance of sustained success.

2015 Completion, Release, and Intention-Setting workbookI created this Year-End Completion and Release workbook a few years ago, and this year instead of selling it I’m giving it away. Because my birthday. Because I’m grateful. Because of you!

Every subscriber to my weekly loveletter will receive a free download link to the updated and revised workbook starting this week and going until the end of December. I’ve given a lot of gifts away this birthday month, and I’m closing it out with this gift from my heart to yours. It’s a beautiful and useful book. Set aside an hour or so and do some work that will help you set the foundation for changes for the coming year.

Look for the link in your copy of my loveletter in the coming weeks, and if you are not yet a subscriber, you can opt in right here.

I’m turning to three quotes from Mary Oliver to close this post. Because she really says it:

“When it’s over, I want to say: all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it is over, I don’t want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.

I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.”

“The most regretful people on earth are those who felt the call to creative work, who felt their own creative power restive and uprising, and gave to it neither power nor time.”

“Sometimes I need
only to stand
wherever I am
to be blessed.”

I’d love it if you’d chime in in the comments; how’s your year-end ritual shaping up?

Solstice image courtesy Danny Pivato from NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day website

Take a deeper dive — more articles like this one...

Darkness, goals, and your inner curmudgeon


In the darkness, take time to review, complete, release the year that’s ending


Increase visibility — step out from behind your mask and be seen


Release what’s holding you back — Full Moon in Sagittarius


Release and renewal — New Moon Solar Eclipse


What’s waiting for you on the other side of the stillness point?



I’m a barely tamed hippie, sage, seasoned, sarcastic (not all the time any more, but still). I’m a mom, a daughter, sister, a neighbor, and a friend. I’ve been on this meandering journey — like you, probably — seeking a better connection to and experience of peace, harmony, and fun in every bit of life. I’m single, quite good at it, and mostly love it. I’m here for the conversations I get to have with you, which these days center on exploring the mystery and beauty of life, work, health, aging, and creative expression. Want to know a little more about me and my journey? Explore the site. Read the blog. Connect with me on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.

Join the conversation!

  1. Wonderful idea Sue, I know it is something that can be both uplifting and at the same time depressing depending on how you see one;s year. I will be taking time at the end of the year away from my computer to review and plan at the beach I think xxoo

  2. Oh, so, so grateful for this, Sue! And so look forward to spending an afternoon with your Year-End Completion and Release workbook.

    Brings me such ease (and makes me respond with “Yes!”) when you talk of honoring and practicing completion and release work. This gives any “resolutions” a place from which to grow. Thank you!

    • Dana, thanks so much! I like the way you put it — a place from which to grow. Like preparing the soil before we place the seeds. Lovely!

      Love and light,

  3. Wonderful reminder Sue and I am so on the same page in fact I’ve written quite a bit about this myself. It really makes such a difference to take some quality time before the end of the year to reflect, celebrate accomplishments and define the lessons we’ve learned along the way. Thank you for the inspiration!

  4. Love it Sue! Somehow your blogs always leave me with a smile. Especially appreciate this clarity: “Once you have done this completion and release work, then your intentions (and resolutions) have a much stronger foundation and a much better chance of sustained success.”

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