I always get ridiculously excited and optimistic about New Year’s Eve. This is a time when I let go and surrender to new beginnings and fresh starts, the doors that could open and the possibilities and potential that await.

And while it’s true that I celebrate being alive every day, there’s something about moving into a new year that is especially thrilling to me.

I felt extreme excitement about this year in particular and, while I’m still grateful for everything that has transpired, I readily admit that what I expected to happen and what actually happened are not at all the same.

Let me explain…

I often say to my students, “I have a plan and God has a plan, and I’d best not interfere with God’s plan.” True surrender means saying “Okay, God hears my ideas but knows better than I do what is best for me.”

At the beginning of this year, I had plans.

Lots of them.

Right at the end of 2016, I hosted a free call in which I discussed how I would be starting my Body Image Mastery Course in February. I announced my excitement about doing more videos, and about planning a live event and a spiritual retreat with my students. At that time, all of this was true and I was tremendously looking forward to it.

What I didn’t see coming was my mom getting ill, a situation which required me to spend time on the east coast to be with her.

What I didn’t see coming was a pile of technical difficulties that inhibited my progress.

And what I definitely didn’t see coming was a combination of some personal stresses and body imbalances which have caused an eight-pound weight gain that I’m not particularly happy about.

Do I know that all of this is for a reason? Of course, I do.

Does that awareness make it any easier? Not especially.

I’ve spent many weeks, days, and moments feeling like I’ve let down my community, my tribe, my family, my health, my body… But then I have these overwhelming moments of nothing but pure reverence and gratitude for having a relationship with God that’s more important than anything on this earthly plane.

So far this year may not have gone according to my plan, but I know it has gone according to God’s plan, which means there are reasons and treasures hidden within these seemingly unfavorable circumstances. Unexpected gifts and surprises have arisen, mostly in the shape of new friends and business connections.

There are reasons and treasures hidden within seemingly unfavorable circumstances. @laurafenamore (Click to Tweet!)

These gifts remind me that God has my back and that everything is going to be okay…even in those frustrating times when I can’t see how.

So I’m setting a new benchmark: my birthday (July 6th). I choose this day because not only is it a time to celebrate myself, but it also marks the halfway point in the year and still gives me some time to work toward my goals. I have every intention of creating more courses and programs (I already have – my Body Image Mastery Course begins on May 16th!), nurturing my physical and emotional health, and taking care of my mom as best I can.

I also have the intention of surrendering to the flow of God’s plan.

Doors don’t only open on January 1st. New Year’s Eve is not the only time to get excited about new beginnings. There is still plenty of 2017 left, and I’m going to make it an amazing year!!

What setbacks and victories have you experienced so far this year?

How are you handling the unexpected, and surrendering to the flow?

Please let us know in the comments!

Laura Fenamore, Body Image Expert, Coach and acclaimed Author is on a mission to help women around the world end the constant battle with their bodies and start adoring who they see in the mirror. Her approach walks students and readers through the heartfelt journey to self-love at any size or age by unlocking the secrets to a lifetime of emotional, physical and spiritual health. After overcoming a lifelong battle with addiction, obesity, and eating disorders, Laura released 100 pounds – keeping it off for more than 28 years. She chronicles this journey to self-love and health in her widely acclaimed book, Skinny, Fat, Perfect: Love Who You See in the Mirror. Learn more about Laura’s programs, or invite her to speak by visiting SkinnyFatPertect.com.

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