How to close 2023 with intention & start the new year right

How to close 2023 with intention & start the new year right

With the year coming to a close, we’re opting out of some toxic traditions and into some more intentional practices. It’s our way of giving 2023 the send-off it deserves, while setting ourselves up for a gratitude-filled 2024. 

 When it comes to reflecting on the year, we often lean into the most familiar - and often, the most negative - thought patterns, like shame, guilt, and self-criticism. So this year, we’re flipping the script and doing things differently, with a bunch of ways you can reframe your mindset and get the feel-good vibes you deserve. This is one article tab you’ll want to keep open…

Out with the old patterns - and in with the new!

The old: Guilt about your 2023 goals

The new: Gratitude for what you did achieve

This year, we’re not taking the usual route of reflecting on the things we didn’t achieve - it doesn’t make us feel any better and it definitely doesn’t motivate us for the next 12 months ahead. 

So here’s what you do: write a big old list of all the things you’re proud of this year - the achievements in your job, mental baggage you let go of, all the ways you grew as a person, the milestones - however big or small. Use this list to reinforce what’s most important to you, and in turn, it can help guide your 2024 goals in a more authentic way. 




The old: Making unrealistic New Year’s resolutions

The new: Listing values to build your year around

There’s so much pressure placed on New Year’s Eve to shed your old self and start the new year completely transformed. But the reality is, you can evolve and do new things all year round! Instead, create a clear set of values that you can build your year around - your goals may shift or go in different directions, but your values will keep you on the right path.

Here’s what you do: before listing any resolutions, reflect on the values that are most important to you. Think of it like planting seeds of intention for your year, so you can flourish no matter where the next 12 months take you. Try to scale it down to a top 5 - anything from integrity to courage or self-compassion - and whenever you’re facing big decisions or personal challenges, come back to these to see if you’re staying true to your 2024 intentions.


The old: Adopting a ‘new year, new me’ mindset

The new: Acknowledge the stage you’re at in your journey

If there’s one thing we can leave in 2023, it’s the idea that a new year means we start from scratch again. So rather than abandoning all the progress and unfinished work you’ve accomplished, take some time to view both years as chapters in the ongoing story of your life.

Here’s what you do: jot down some of the things you worked on in 2023 - developing kinder self-talk, learning a new skill, getting on top of your taxes - and with each item, list all the steps you took to grow and evolve. They can be tiny increments or big stepping stones, but each one acts as a reminder that just because you didn’t finish something, doesn’t mean you didn’t make progress. 

On the flip side, let yourself be ok with not finishing some things. Sometimes, our guilt or fear pushes us to keep going, even if our guts says otherwise. So use this reflection as a way to identify what’s important to hold onto, and what could be left behind - then enjoy the freedom of not having to start anew! 


The ‘reframe your mindset’ toolkit

Every time we shake up our mindset, it takes time to get into the groove of whatever we’re replacing old patterns with. So to reinforce these healthier approaches to the new year, here’s a handy library of reframing rituals.

Guided listening

Try this guided meditation from Lauren Ash to manifest abundance and gratitude, while letting go of all the barriers keeping you from growth and happiness. This one is perfect for mornings and can even be listened to while you’re getting ready for your day.

Try this track from Sarah Blondin to help let go of worries and fears, and feel supported as life unfolds in its own way. A good one for the evenings or anytime you want to soothe your need to control.

If you’re looking for transformative podcasts, then check out Pass Around the Smile by Cleo Massey, which offers episodes on living with purpose and intuition, knowing your worth and rewiring your subconscious - to name a few!



Work through some guided journal prompts that help you release 2023 in a way that sparks gratitude and peace, rather than shame or comparison. Try these five reflective prompts for the year ahead or these ready-made journals that guide you through positive reflections.

Another approach is to jot down anything you’d like to leave behind in 2023 - negative habits, toxic relationships, or unwanted feelings - and burn them in a cathartic ritual, using a fire-safe bowl (like glass or stainless steel).


Move your body

There’s nothing like movement to stir up the mental reflections and give you space to process your thoughts. So if movement is your medicine, then head to the beach and fling yourself over some waves, float in other calmer waters, or lace up your walking shoes and take a long hike in nature. Leave the headphones and company at home and just be with yourself and your thoughts.

Reaffirm your good vibes 

To give yourself daily reminders of the good vibes you’ve been cultivating, we love using rituals like Cleo Massey’s affirmation cards or online courses. These keep you in touch with your intuition and help bring you back to your intentions whenever you feel a little lost or anxious. 



New year, same you

The end of the year acts as the perfect point to reflect on what you’re grateful for and what you could leave behind. But as we enter a new year, it also helps to remember that the only thing changing completely is the calendar. Everything else - your personal journey, goals, and life in general - continue in a new chapter, same book.

So however you welcome the new year, try not to take it too seriously. We all get where we’re going in our own time anyway.