Three events align to make this time of year feel like the beginning of a new cycle for me:
- December 21 – The Winter Solstice begins a new celestial cycle of dark to light and back to dark that I experience a powerful response to as a biological creature.
- January 1 – A cultural new year and the first day on the calendar for many people in my environment.
- January 5 – My birthday begins a new personal year for me.
Because the sense of starting a new cycle is so strong at this time, I usually think about what I would like to accomplish in the next year. Several times I have made a collage on Solstice or New Year’s Day to remind me of those goals. It’s a lot of fun and an extremely effective way to key in on what you want to manifest in your life.
The day that feels like the beginning of the year may occur at another time for you. If so, just keep this project in mind for when it comes around. It’s well worth doing.
Supplies you will need
- Glue stick
- A piece of poster board, cardboard or foam board.
- Several magazines, newspapers, junk mail, brochures, flyers, etc. that you don’t mind cutting up
- Other images like photos and pictures from the internet
- Optional supplies: decorative elements like glitter, fabric, ribbon, lace, leaves, flowers, shells, crayon, paint, stickers, etc.
- Optional equipment: computer, printer, scanner, copier, camera.
Identify your goals
Begin by writing a few notes about what you would like to accomplish in your life in the upcoming year.
I find it helpful to first reflect on what I have accomplished in the cycle just ending for each of several areas in my life: home, health, connection, creative expression, learning, financial security, etc. From that context I brainstorm about where I would like to be a few years from now, and then write down what I need to do in the next year to move me toward that goal.
Here’s a good place to start for inspiration. I’m sure there are many other great blog posts out there about goal-setting. If you are aware of a good one please let us know about it in the comments.
Make your collage
- Look through your magazines, newpapers, photos, etc to find images that represent or remind you of your goals for the next year. You may want to make copies of photographs to put yourself in the picture. Or download and print pictures from the internet.
You can try to find pictures of least one goal from each category, or just concentrate on three or four that seem most important. It works well to use images that either show the goal already accomplished or the kinds of things you will be doing to get there.
- Now for the fun arts and crafts part. Cut out the relevant elements from the pictures you have selected. If you find any others that strike your fancy as patterns or background elements go ahead and cut those out too. You may also want to cut out a few words from headlines.
- Arrange your pictures into a collage on your poster board. It’s fun to experiment with different layouts. Don’t worry about scale, or reality. Be as artistic or unartistic as you like. Just arrange them in a way that looks good to you.
- Now go through and attach each picture to the poster board with your glue stick.
- Feel free to add additional elements for decoration. The sky is really the limit about how far you want to go to decorate your collage. Do not feel under any pressure to make it look slick or professional – just work with it until it appeals to you in some way.
- When you have finished, hang your collage someplace you will see it every day, such as the place where you dress or eat breakfast. Or hey, maybe on that refrigerator we cleaned up a couple of weeks ago! Pick a place that is visible to you and a good match for your comfort level about how many other people you want to see it.
That’s it. The process of building a tangible representation will cause you to define and focus on your goals in a very concentrated way, and your collage will then help both your conscious and unconscious mind remain aware of the things you said you want to do for the rest of the year. I have found it to be a remarkably powerful technique.
Happy new year!