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Reclaiming “Unlucky” Thirteen by Recognizing the Strength in Ourselves

We all have superstitious beliefs and one that is quite common is avoiding things that are associated with the number 13 (e.g., some buildings skip the 13th floor, some people stay at home on Friday the 13th). As we go into a whole year with the label 13, how about we make the most of it and work on changing our mindset from one of hoping for luck to one of having faith in ourselves? Let’s examine what this might look like.

Avoiding things means shrinking your world
Think about the energy it takes to avoid or ignore something. It’s pretty difficult, isn’t it? In addition, it tends to mean missing out on things as well as living in a state of anxiety. To expand your world, you need to consider how you choose your activities: are your choices based on fear or enthusiasm? Having faith in yourself can be as simple as channeling the energy you would have used in worrying over or avoiding something into actively seeking out a happier alternative.

Uncover the message behind your reluctance
We may be avoiding something for a valid reason, however there are times when our avoidance is simply a habit. To open yourself to experiencing more of life, you need to discover what lies behind your apprehension and how facing its cause could enhance your life. Beginning to notice where and when you tend to limit yourself can offer important insights. A first step in reversing those patterns can be as straightforward as asking yourself “why?” when you find yourself doing so.

Luck is what you make it
What some people call luck, others call being prepared to seize opportunities as they arise. To make your own luck, it helps to be open, flexible, and willing to examine your attitude toward the unexpected. Feeling lucky can be as simple as reframing the hurdles in life as interesting surprises, challenges to be explored, or chances to grow in maturity and wisdom.

Self-Discovery Tool 57
In 2013 how can we learn to recognize our capacity for courage and start to see the events that come our way – good or bad – as ultimately lucky? How can self-discovery help us get to the root of our superstitions and fears and start to let them go? Let’s reclaim 13 as fortunate, knowing that no matter the number on the calendar or the circumstance facing us, we can choose to make our own luck!

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Mapping Your Next Year

Welcome to 2012! Since twelve is a number that crops up all over the place and seems to have some sort of special significance – twelve eggs to a dozen; the twelve tribes of Israel and the twelve Apostles, the twelve signs of the Zodiac; the twelve days of Christmas; the twelve steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, the “twelfth of never” – we thought we’d make twelve recommendations for self-discovery for the coming year, one for each of the twelve months in the year. And to make even more of the number twelve, we created our list in acrostic form using two iterations of the letters that spell the word twelve T, W, E, L, V and E.

January: T – Try something new.

February: W – Wonder at the world’s beauty.

March: E – Engross yourself in meaningful activities.

April: L – Let go of baggage – actual and emotional.

May: V – Volunteer to help, formally or informally.

June: E – Envision a brighter future.

July: T – Take a risk.

August: W – Watch and learn.

September: E – Engage with a mentor.

October: L – Listen patiently and actively.

November: V – Vary your routine.

December: E – Excel at being you by simply being yourself!

Start the year off with something fresh, follow that up with an appreciation of what your environment already offers and take advantage of opportunities as they arise. Look across your life and let go of what isn’t working, offer your help to others with your newly available time (remember you let go of what wasn’t working!) and picture where these efforts will take you. Put fear on hold and jump into something where the outcome may be uncertain but the act of trying itself feels rewarding, and pay attention to feedback, guidance, and advice from trusted family, friends and colleagues. End the year alert to options, alive to possibilities and aware of all that you are and can become.

Self-Discovery Tool #46
We found using a pattern of numbers and letters useful as we pondered the year ahead. What systems or frameworks might inspire you to forge a more meaningful life in 2012? How might tapping into them help you to make your self-discovery goals easier to organize and imagine and therefore easier to achieve? Mostly we’d most like to encourage you, not just as your final goal in December, but all year long to focus on living as the real you. Not only is this good for your overall wellbeing but no one else can fulfill this role but you and others may need the authentic “you” much more than you realize!