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  • Writer's pictureSue Bowles

Making All Things New....It's Your Turn!

Wow! What a year 2023 has been! I don't know about you, but mine sure has been heavy at times. It started with navigating the rivers of grief after Dad passed December 27, 2022. Today's a year since he passed. My eyes have been leaking off and on all day. There was a lot that needed to happen in the following months as estate stuff was in high swing, and as that was happening I found out I needed a 2nd surgery on my right foot - the 2nd in 11 months. We lost both parents, 2 aunts, and our last uncle in 3 years, on top of 2 surgeries for myself in less than a year. Not exactly what I had on my agenda for 2023!

No doubt your year has had some weight to it, too. Something we have in common, though, is we can all say 'we made it.' We are still here. Maybe bruised, battered, beat up, but never defeated. We got back up. We kept swinging. We found a way to take that next step.

I look back at the year and I see a common theme...old things being made new. It reminds me of Isaiah 43:18-19 - "Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?"

So how does that apply to us? It's a mindset thing. Are you clinging to the old ways of doing or thinking about things or are you open to thinking about things in a new way? Here are a few examples to illustrate my point.

Issue: 2nd surgery in 11 months

Old thought: here we go again - am I ever going to be active again? Will my foot ever heal?

New thought: this is my next step to full healing and getting back to being active again

And another -

Issue: Dad passed - I don't know how I'll carry on

Old thought: I miss him. Things will never be the same. All my dreams of what I wanted to enjoy with Dad just died.

New thought: I miss him. Things will never be the same. And now I have opportunity to honor all Dad taught me by taking my next step, chasing those dreams, and going after them with all I have, just as he did.

Those shifts in mindset don't come without effort, purpose, internal work, and time. But the point is they can come. Times of stress and loss and challenge are what I call 'gut check' times. What are we really made of? How deep can we dig to take that next step when our shoes feel like cement? How DO we carry on when the load is heavy?

For me, I have given myself no other option but to get back up again. My parents didn't raise me to be defeated by setbacks. They certainly didn't model that to me, and trust me, they had their fair share of setbacks, including the loss of their first-born son when he was 2. Part of healing, for me, is taking that next step, honoring them in the process.

If you've heard me speak about my book, This Much I Know...The Space Between, you've heard me say 'we all have our stories and that's the one thing no one can ever take from us.' As we embark on 2024, what is the next step in your story?

My Step Ahead is here to help you take your next step with a number of new resources and offerings for 2024. We will be rolling out new stuff during the year:

  • First up, I am blessed to be part of the international anthology "Breaking the Silence: Voices of Survivors," releasing January 18th. You will read 21 stories of survival and finding a way to go on from overwhelming horrors and traumas. Each author made the choice to get back up, one more time...and now we are sharing our stories to help you do the same. Be the first to know when it's available here.

  • Life coaching packages with Sue Bowles - because sometimes we need help holding onto hope until we're strong enough to hold it for ourselves

  • Speaking engagements online and in person

  • More resources on the Dare to Believe Movement website. Get caught up now with material on dealing with Fear and Imposter Syndrome here. While you're there be sure to sign up for updates so you don't miss out on new material when it's released!

What about you? What is one area you want to move in this next year? There's nothing magical about the flip of a calendar. You don't have to wait until 2024 is 'officially' here. Start now.

Not sure where to start? Reach out to me here for a short (no charge) contact call to see how life coaching can help you with that next step.

No matter how 2023 has ended for you, no matter what 2024 looks like for you, I believe in you. Your story matters, and your choices of how you respond to your current challenges is the theme of your next chapter. You, too, can see all things made new in your life. May you feel the excitement of newness as you embark on the next leg of your journey.

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