The New Year is always a time of reprioritizing and refocusing on the coming year. The Lunar New Year, sometimes called “Chinese New Year,” is also a time of taking great care to prepare yourself and your house for the coming shift in energies we move from one year to another.
Many special decorative items, foods, flowers and New Year items are placed around the home to welcome prosperity and good fortune in the New Year.
However, less well known is the self-preparation that also coincides with making special meals, decorating, and cleaning.
These customs are actions designed to bring good fortune and favor to you by helping you release old personal energies and creating a clear, clean slate as you pass from one year to the next. These customs and tips can help to reset and recharge your life here at the beginning of the Year of the Ox – or any new animal year.
1. Beautify yourself.
The Lunar New Year is the time to take care of yourself and your looks. In fact, most Chinese and many Asians schedule their haircuts prior to the New Year. But why stop there? Maybe try a new style or color.
Or, make an appointment for a mani-pedi or make your own at-home spa day. Check with your dermatologist for a skin treatment or other enhancement to go into the new year with a rosy glow. The idea is to look your best at the start of the year.
2. Buy new clothing.
It’s traditional to buy new clothes this time of year, so go through your closets and discard old, torn, stained clothes and buy new clothes. It’s also a good time to replenish your staple items like lingerie and socks. And don’t forget to put something red on your shopping list to wear on the first day of the Lunar New Year.
3. Renew friendships.
The start of the year is a good time for fostering loving and happy feelings by remembering others and reconnecting with friends. If you haven’t spoken to a friend in some time, pick up the phone or send them a note. Find ways to renew your relationships to improve your personal and emotional harmony.
4. Reconnect with family.
Make plans with family to have a meal or make a date to visit one another. Schedule visits and trips and make plans to do things together in the new year – and get it down on the calendar. It puts the focus on the year head and helps reconnect with your loving feelings with the people you care for the most.
5. Settle debts.
All money is a form of energy. To have plenty of cash is to have full, yang energy. Debts, and payments owed, is a type of yin energy. This can become problematic especially when you owe money.
The knowledge of your debt can draw on you and pull from other opportunities until that energetic aspect of the debt has been paid. Work to make any debts whole, paying off credit cards or loans from friends or family first.
The magnetic attraction and energetic tie are also there when someone owes you money.
If someone owes you money, can you let it go and release the debt?
If you’re living without the payments your friend or family member owes you, then perhaps it’s best to forgive the debt knowing your money may never be repaid, and that you are ready to release the energetic cord tying you to the debt that’s owed you.
Put simply, it’s sometimes possible to maintain another’s indebtedness to us by our attraction to what we are owed and not being able to release it. Work to finalize any debts you owe by paying them and, if possible, releasing debts that are owed to you, not for the person who owes you, but for yourself.
6. Release your mistakes.
Everyone makes mistakes and while you know that, can you release your own mistakes? We often forgive others much more easily than we do ourselves. Try this simple exercise.
Cut a sheet of paper into inch wide strips. Write any regret or mistakes you made in the past year on a strip of paper. Then burn each strip, throwing the mistakes into the fire one at a time, just as you made them, letting your self-judgment and regret burn away as the paper turns to ash
7. Release old hurts.
This is a time when you want to release difficult times, let go of ill will, and to offer forgiveness. In short, let bygones be bygones and begin with a clear emotional plate. Is there someone with whom you’d like to clear the air? Sometimes you can offer an olive branch of forgiveness and re-stablish fond feelings just by making a simple phone call to put your relationship back on track.
Other times, the hurts are ones that you may not be able to put behind you as easily.
A simple ritual that is effective and can help release past hurts and re-charge with a 7 Flower Ritual Bath.
Set out a bottle of water and a jar of bath salts in sunlight for a full day. Next, pick 7 types of flowers, and add petals from each from into a full bath in which you have added the sun-soaked water and bath salts.
Include flower petals that are white, blue, pink, light and dark red, yellow, and purple. You may also want to add a few drops of lavender essential oil.
The petals of seven types of flowers to represent the seven chakras and the colors represent the five elements. While the sun water helps to release old hurts, the salt draws them out and the flowers recharge your body and chakras. You’ll leave the bath feeling refreshed and re-charged, and ready for the coming year.