Every year at this time, I invite you to trade in your New Year’s resolutions for something that will not only open your mind and heart but will also powerfully clear the way for what you actually want to create in the next 12 months.

If it feels impossible to think about what you want to set intentions for in 2021 right now, I get it. 2020 was a beast. It’s hard to believe we are in the 10th month of dealing with a global pandemic, and Covid-19 brought with it so many challenging firsts and unknowns. Our collective loss, grief, and fear need to be processed.

The Black Lives Matter movement, civil and human rights activism, and a historical election year here in the US have shed light on our divisions and the deep healing required.

I have updated my New Year’s ritual practice with additional exercises to better support the intensity of what we’ve experienced. My hope is this practice will help you process what just happened, raise your awareness of the lessons learned, and release what’s no longer serving you. 

NOTE: Although the death of a loved one is a peak experience – this ritual is not designed or appropriate for that level of grieving. 

I also hope this will give you an opportunity to create space for celebrating and acknowledging the gifts of 2020. In this video, I walk you through my process of self-reflection and ritual. I’ve found these exercises to be a profound act of self-care, which is why I keep returning to it year after year. I am so happy to share it with you today.



Personally, resolutions have never really worked for me. To be totally honest, in the past I’d overestimate or make a goal that was too big…and then when I inevitably didn’t follow through, I’d feel like total crap. Do you feel me?

We so often fail at New Year’s resolutions because just saying you’re going to suddenly make a big change in your life usually isn’t enough to make it stick.

Resolutions can often be a kind of one-dimensional goal setting: it’s only forward-thinking. Setting them doesn’t always leave space to understand what’s going on under the surface.

From a therapeutic point of view, the most effective way to make real, lasting change is to look back for evidence of what has and hasn’t been working. Then, from a place of self-awareness and truth, decide what shifts will better align your choices with the life you want to create.

This ritual is an invitation to give yourself the space, time, and the luxury of thinking about these things in a real way. You can download the complete What Crap Are You Leaving in 2020 guide right here. It walks you step-by-step through the entire process, from journal prompts through a ritual burning to release anything you’re ready to let go of.

As you move through the journaling exercises, you might feel some resistance, but I promise you, self-reflection is essential because if we don’t learn from our behavioral choices from the previous year, what do you think happens?

We repeat them. And no one wants that. I know that you’re strong enough to dig deep and to do hard things. Just LOOK at what you’ve made it through this year!

So as you go through, you’ll focus on your own behavior – your strengths, your weaknesses, and the things you want to change.

You’ll spend time reflecting on what I call the “peak experiences” of 2020. A peak experience can be positive or negative. When you think back on the past year, what were the most impactful moments?

These experiences are incredible opportunities to glean self-knowledge, promote growth, and spur transformation. I share my personal peak experiences of 2020 inside the episode, so be sure to watch it here.

We are REALLY going to get to the bottom of what you learned from your 2020 experiences that didn’t go the way you wanted them to (and…there was A LOT that didn’t go the way we wanted in 2020).

While some of those will be painful to re-examine, this is how we learn and grow – instead of feeling guilty or staying stuck in anger and disappointment, we focus that energy on digging through the crap to uncover gems of wisdom and opportunities for growth.

Then also new this year, you’ll create a “brag” list! Acknowledging and celebrating your strengths and accomplishments is healthy and uplifting. It’s an act of self-love, and after the year we had, we all could use MORE of that!

Once we’ve got the beautiful clarity that comes from honest reflection, we’ll move into what we DO want in 2021! In the downloadable guide, you’ll find a step-by-step guide to the journaling process and instructions for the ritual burn, baby burn! I love a good ritual moment, and I hope you do too! Ritual burning can be a really powerful way of reaffirming yourself and putting the universe on notice that we’re done with things that are painful or unsatisfying.

This process has helped me and so many others free ourselves up for something better in the coming year.

Here’s where you can download the “What Crap Are You Leaving in 2020?” ritual guide. 

You deserve to create the life that you want, and this beautiful ritual could be a pivot point for you. Remember: all the answers that you need are within you.

I want to see what you’re creating in 2021, so please, connect with me on Instagram @terricole and let me know how this experience went for you! If you think the people in your life would like this ritual, share it with them! Vic and I will be doing our burn together this year, and in the past, I’ve done it with my extended family and friends. It can be a wonderful thing to share with the ones you love.

I am so grateful for each and every one of you, my true blue crew. The way you care about your mental health, about your relationships, and about doing good and spreading love in this world inspires me.

We’ll be kicking off our first (totally FREE!) non-challenge of the new year with the Raise Your Love Vibe Kickstart, so if you’re interested, here’s where you can join us to get 2021 started right! 

Happy New Year from me and mine to you and yours and as always, take care of you.

Terri Cole is a licensed psychotherapist, transformation coach, and an expert at turning fear into freedom. Sign up for Terri’s weekly Newsletter, check out her blog and follow her on Twitter.