At the beginning of 2015, I had thought this year was here to mark a new chapter in my life – a turning point of some kind.
I had thought it would be all about forging forward, creating anew and rising to brand new heights.
But life had other ideas.
As I look back on 2015 what I can now see is that it was a year of unravelling, destruction and reviewing the past (over and over) so that core lessons could be learned.
It was a year of healing and of needing to face what I wanted to deny. I had to evaluate everything in my life and go through it all with a fine tooth comb – assessing what I wanted to keep and what I wanted to release.
And in order to do so, I was guided deeply inwards.
This was my year to really face all of the inner demons I had been running from. To heal the core ego patterns that were sabotaging my life. To transmute fear into love. To shine a bright light upon my inner darkness. To bring all of the crap up to the surface so it could be released once and for all.
Inner transformation is not for the faint hearted. This has been a confronting, challenging and at times heart-breaking year.
But I am so proud of the commitment I have shown to my own inner awakening and spiritual growth. This was a year that had to happen and I know that the core work I did, will never need to be repeated.
Life is all about learning
If I have realised one thing it is that we are not here to create an external pretty façade where each area of life looks perfect, shiny and glossy like something out of a magazine.
Life is messy. Yes it is delicious, beautiful and magical but sometimes it is also hard.
It is a crazy contradiction.
I think when we strive for perfection in our external life, we avoid the powerful inner journey we are here to experience.
If you are skipping the inner stuff, it is only a matter of time before cracks start to appear in your external world, which will bring you to your knees and force you to go inwards.
I’ve realised for me, that 2015 was much more about the core inner lessons, personal transformation and spiritual awakening, than it was about the achievement and attainment of goals and desires.
This type of stuff is far less glamorous. It does not look as pretty on your instagram account. And it is confronting for people standing by you who would rather see you rosy cheeked and smiling.
But this is what makes life real. This is what makes us real people. We are real when we are experiencing the full spectrum of emotion – the highs and lows of life and when we are willing to dive deep to really uncover the truth behind it all.
When the external world crumbles…
This year, I watched many areas of my external world crumble and this was a necessary process in helping me burn up all the ego based attachment, fear and need that surrounded them.
I felt so frustrated at many times this year, as I yearned to expand and move into new territory.
But rather I was forced to re-visit, re-adjust and make core foundational changes. Old issues resurfaced over and over and over until the lesson they were here to teach me was received.
As Pema Chodron says “Nothing goes away until it teaches us what we need to know”
Many my external desires and goals were not achieved this year, but you know what, I don’t actually care.
If anything, stuff was actually taken away. I was stripped bare. All the distractions of the external world were removed, to get me to finally sit with and face the one thing I had been running from – myself.
The inner transformation I experienced this year has been radical to say the least, but I can honestly say that I am so damn proud of the woman I have become.
Lessons on Love
Much like in 2014, love came in to my life, and then left. This helped me witness all the ways I ‘needed’ this love. As love came in and then was taken away, I was able to observe my reaction. When the love arrived I became attached and addicted, and lived in fear of the day it would disappear.
I saw how elated I would become when someone wanted me, and when I received male attention, and then how anxious I would become when that love was gone.
I was able to see how much I depended on external love to make me feel safe, secure and good about myself
I witnessed patterns of control that still needed to be healed. I saw how I would manipulate a man or a situation in order to get what I wanted, how I would try to control him or the situation so I could feel safe, and how I would wait anxiously by my phone to hear from him or replay all the lovely things he said to me in my mind over and over.
Yep, I was still addicted to that love. It was my drug. And I needed to experience men playing these various roles for me so I could witness this pattern and finally heal it.
And it was through all of this that I truly began to understand that love is not outside of me. Love does not come from another. Love is not something I need to get.
I am love. I am the source of the love I seek.
Lessons on Business
Oh business. I started the year with epic plans. I had huge dreams and visions of what I wanted to create in my business this year.
And then something happened.
It was around March/April when my inner guidance began speaking at me in full force to step away. “Step away?” I thought. “Step away from the one thing that has brought me more joy than anything else? Step away from the dream that I have been working towards for years? Close my coaching calendar? Say what!?“
But I followed it’s guidance and I spent a lot of this year, saying the one precious word that I would never normally say – “No”. I had to say no to others so I could say yes to myself. I had to turn down commitments. I radically reduced my coaching load. I took extended breaks from social media and blogging.
Part of me tried to forge on, but the energy around my work had literally dried up. The stream had stopped. I would sit in front of a blank word document and stare. Nothing moved through me. Writing was like pumping a dry well. The inspiration was gone and all I could do was wait for it to return.
Once again, life didn’t want distractions. It didn’t want me focusing on others or focusing on my work.
It wanted me to focus on me.
It needed me fully facing everything within me and not using my business as a way to avoid myself.
As I detached from my business, I watched my ego squirm. I realised how tightly my sense of worth had been tied up in my work. I saw how addicted I was to the validation of my peers and audience. I saw my attachment to outcomes and how I let figures, results, statistics and dollar signs tell me how valuable I was. I saw the identity I had created as ‘Connie Chapman the Life Coach’, and I realised that without that title I had no idea who I was.
All of this had to be faced in the name of authenticity. Because I could not dare move forward as the teacher, guide, healer and coach I know I am destined to be, with all this ego shit lurking in the background.
I had to release the business so I could release the ego that surrounded it.
And here I discovered that I am not what I do. I am not my job title. I am not my achievements. None of these things mean anything about me.
My work is my platform for joy and self-expression. It is not a playground for my ego.
Lessons on Myself
My biggest lessons this year have been around surrender, letting go and releasing.
Surrendering my way and my plan, and instead following the higher plan.
Releasing ego patterns of attachment, need and fear and transforming these patterns into love.
Letting go of external love, success, validation and results and learning how to feel full within, despite what is happening around me.
Witnessing, catching and watching all of the ways my fear-driven ego has been keeping me small, powerless and limited. Seeing all of it’s games with confronting clarity.
All of this has been burnt up in a violet flame of love, all that is left is gold.
What is left is pure. It is real. It is truth.
I have been pulled deeply into the core of myself, and my connection with myself is now stronger than it has ever been. I am solid, tuned in and centred.
I know who I am. I know what I want.
And as I sit here on New Years Eve, I can finally look in the mirror and feel like myself again. Yes, Connie is back.
My year of preparation is done. The lessons have been learnt. The growth has been experienced. The radical transformation is complete.
Many seeds were planted in 2015 that were not ready to spout. All year I have been the gentle gardener, tending to my soil, nurturing my seeds, allowing them to incubate and strengthen and grow deep roots in to the earth. Sitting with them and lovingly tending to them until they are ready.
And 2016 is the year to harvest. The soil is ripe. The seeds are plump with life. The sun is shining. The world is ready to see what has been hiding beneath the surface for so long.
I can’t wait to re-emerge and share all of this with you.
Here’s to a magical, love-filled, beautiful and awe-inspiring year.
Thank you for your endless love and support for the work I do. You mean the world to me.
30 thoughts on “Reflections On 2015: My Core Lessons + Learnings From A Transformative Year”
Wow I literally get goosebumps reading this real blog post – written directly from your heart to ours! Thank you for showing up so authentically and showing these vulnerabilities – you create such a sacred space which encourages us readers to strip down our egos and dig deeper into our authentic selfs.
So excited to follow your journey and witness the flourishing of your richly planted seeds! Have a lovely New Years Eve! <3
Thank you Elsa, I love hearing your experiences of reading this post. It truly is my intention to authentically and vulnerably live, breath and teach this work for the exact reason you shared – to support others to find the courage and willingness to do the same. Thank you for being a part of my journey. Sending you lots of love for the year ahead x
Wow what a year you’ve had. I hope 2016 is an easier year but also one that brings you everything you hope and dream
Thank you KIzzy. One of my words for the year is EASE, so yes that is definitely my intention 🙂 x
Loving this oh so beautiful and transparent post, Connie.
Big love to you, and wishing you a magical 2016! xx
Thank you so much Amy. As I am sure you know, these posts take a wee bit of courage to write, but I found it so incredibly healing to get it all out on the page. Lots of love to you and I hope 2016 is magical for you x
So powerful Connie! Authentic & real! Happy 2016 to you.
Thank you Samantha. Sending you lots of love for a beautiful 2016 x
A Big heartfelt thank you for these words, they are so pure and real. Thank you for inspiring me every day sharing your ups and downs, you allow me to feel whatever comes . I wish you a great 2016!!!
Thank you Daniela. Yes, allowing ourselves to feel and embrace whatever comes (no matter how ‘good’ or ‘bad’) is such a beautiful practise – this really is the key to it all. Wishing you a fantastic year ahead x
Fantastic article! May your garden thrive. Xo
Thank you Erin 🙂 x
Connie, I had to comment because your words could not ring more true for me. I felt like you were speaking my exact thoughts about my year. Everything in my external world crumbled this year, and I have spent a lot of time looking inward and facing my fears and anxieties that have held me back for way too long. I too am excited for what 2016 will bring and wish you the best year ahead. Cheers!
We truly are all in this together aren’t we Rachel, as it seems many of us have had similar experiences this year. It is beautiful you have found the courage to look within, face fears and do the inner work as the external began to crumble. This is big work, but I know we are never given anything we cannot handle. Sending you lots of love for the year ahead x
Once again Connie thanks for baring your soul and for sharing your heart. This is truly inspiring and I can so relate to all you said especially on the ego patterns that we follow with love and relationships.
May the new year bring you all the glorious harvest that the universe has been preparing for you. Love.
Thank you Jakky. Yep love and relationships provide some of the biggest soul lessons and opportunities for growth for many of us! May 2106 be full of blessings for you also x
Love this Connie <3
I feel I have experienced a very similar year! One that snuck up from behind and knocked me off my feet – divine.
A big, crazy, beautifully hard year. Very necessary.
I would personally like to acknowledge and thank you. I find, as an individual, or as those who do not know you personally – 'Connie Chapman the Life Coach' – you resonate. Something that is hard to do in this day and age with so many (amazing) life coaches and souls floating around. You speak to me. I feel you clearly.
Well done to you. Thank you for your vulnerability and authenticity.
Your naturally gentle nature translates very well through this 'e'lectronic platform 🙂
Much love <3
Thank you Ashleigh that is such beautiful feedback to receive 🙂 We truly are all in this journey together and being a coach makes me no different to anyone else, so I feel it is really important that we all share ourselves in very real and honest ways. I learn the most by getting into the dirty trenches of inner work and through sharing it, I hope it supports others to feel safe to do the same. Thank you for being a part of my journey x
Connie, this is beautiful. I have been a long-time reader of your blog but have never commented. I’ve been witnessing my shadow self and my patterns a lot lately too so I really related to all of this.
It’s confronting isn’t it? But in order to be truly happy and at peace you have to do the work. I think 2016 will be this year for me. I’m not afraid anymore. Can’t wait to see all the big things you do this year. Thanks for always inspiring and bringing your true self to the blog. Ebony x
Lovely to hear from you Ebony and thank you for commenting 🙂 The shadow is most definitely confronting. And it is so tempting to want to run from it and avoid it, but our power lies in facing it, embracing it and loving it deeply. Thank you for being such a loyal follower of my work. I look forward to sharing more of this journey with you in 2016 x
Oh honey I seriously could have written this entire blog post myself. (Thank you for writing it for me 😉
Sending you oceans of gentle love as together we navigate the abundance of opportunities that come with a new year xo
Oh Tara, thank you. ‘Gentle’ love really resonates with me. It is such a beautiful reminder to drop all resistance and soften more deeply into whatever experience life bring in the moment. Thank you for your love and support. I adore you x
As many of the above: I too feel like this mirrored much of my 2015. There is so much in my life to be grateful for this year, and yet… There has been experience after experience that forced me to reassess things, to sit with disappointment and uncertainty and watch as many core areas of my life that I had felt so sure about, begin to crumble around me.
And for that to be… Okay. Phew.
Thank you for your sweet reflections and honesty Connie. Big love to you, here’s to a nurturing, playful and gentle year ahead x
YES, letting it be ok is key. Acceptance and surrender have been paramount this year to allow whatever needs to fall apart, to do so. This is big work so thank you for letting me know I am not alone on it:) Wishing you a magical year ahead darling xx
Thank you so much for sharing this with us Connie. So much of this rings true for me- 2015 brought me to my knees, and I have come out a different person on the other side. 2016 is going to be fantastic. Thank you! Xx
Yep most of what brings us to our knees is there to give us profound opportunities to crack open, awaken and transform. Sometimes it’s almost like being re-born. Wishing you an incredible 2016 x
What a beautiful raw and honest post! Thank your for opening yourselves up ; definitely inspiring 🙂 I hope 2016 will be YOUR year!
Thank you Pam, OPEN is definitely one of my words for 2016 🙂 Wishing you a magical year too x
So so so beautiful my darling.
Thank you so much sweetheart. I appreciate your support xx