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New Year's Eve Cleansing Ritual

Every year I make it a practice to step into the new year with clarity, curiosity and grace. Some years I am more successful than others. Like many people, 2018 was a profoundly challenging year for me, Chris and many members of our family on all sides. With that said, however, 2018 was also a year I began to say even more loudly, firmly and clearly, “No more” to patterns and experiences in my life I was no longer willing to accept. So, the struggle actually resulted in 2018 being one of the most empowering and liberating years of my life as well. It is a year historically on a micro and macro level that deserves deeper exploration than perhaps any other year in the last couple decades. I could go into the astrological, mystic and energetic reasons why, but…I don’t want to lose you. Suffice it to say, it’s worth us finishing off this year in a conscious, honoring way of ourselves and of all the people around us who have made sacrifices of their time, energy, safety and privacy to say “no more” or “me too.”

In honor of 2018 and in gratitude for all the energy it has created for a powerful 2019, I invite you to try this New Year’s eve honoring and cleansing ritual if you have time:

What you will need:

  1. Journal or paper to write on and pen

  2. Matches or lighter

  3. Bowl, cauldron, can or fire place in which paper can be burned


Find a safe, clean, calm space in your home or wherever you may be for New Year’s Eve to engage in this process of inquiry, contemplation and ritual. Find a comfortable seat.


  1. Macro: Set an alarm ten minutes to journal about or meditate on what in the broader political, social, environmental world impacted you this past year and why. What did you learn about yourself in relation to these events?

  2. Micro: Set an alarm for ten minutes to journal or meditate on your own 2018. What happened? What were the highlights? The low points? What did you learn about yourself? What did you learn about life? What did you learn about your own calling, truth, purpose?

  3. Inner Truth: Put the pen and paper down for a moment if you chose to journal. Breathe in and out of your heart. As you do this, ask your heart (which energetically holds a far greater part of you), what am I willing to let go of? As the answers come up, breathe even more deeply into and out of your heart, and ask yourself the question, “Am I really willing to let this go? And if so, what am I willing to stop or start doing to let it go?” And what I mean here is literally anything that comes up—habits, thoughts, behaviors, relationships, addictions, places, attitudes, jobs. You name it. If you’re answer is “no, I’m not ready to let this go,” I invite you to be generous, compassionate and accepting of that answer. Forcing yourself to be where you are not, won’t get you where you want to go any quicker. In fact, we get to our next steps much more easily when we can accept our current reality.

  4. Recording: When you’re ready, begin to write down what your heart reveals to you of what you’re willing to let go of on a piece of paper that you can burn. On another piece of paper, record what you are willing to do or not do this next year in order to let go of it. And on yet another piece of paper, record everything you will at a later point revisit that you are currently not ready to let go. Set a reminder on your calendar to revisit this list in 90 days. If you are currently working with a therapist, counselor, or coach or have a very trusted friend, I invite you to just say this list of not-willing-to-let-go-of items out loud to them without necessarily asking for any advice or feedback. Please know, we all have this list. There is no shame.

  5. Cleansing: Now start a fire or grab your matches/lighter and container. Alone or in the presence of trusted friends and family, read your list of items you are presently ready to let go of one by one. When you complete your list, place it in the fire or light it on fire and place it in the container. Each person takes a turn. At the end of this ritual, feel free to close your eyes, breathe deeply, and say a prayer or affirmation to yourself that invokes the intention of release. Some common ones are “And so it is.” Or “amen” or “I let this go in the name of “God/Source/?”

  6. Honoring: Now placing your palms together, bow to yourself. If doing this with another, place your hands together at your heart and bow to them.

I wish you all a very cleansing and empowering New Year’s Eve. If you do end up trying this ritual, please let us know how it works for you in the comments below! We love your feedback!

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