End of Year Reflection

End of Year Reflection
In December 2023, Taraki’s Punjaabi Women’s Forum came together for an End of Year Reflection. You can read a summary of the discussion here.

In December 2023, Taraki's Punjabi Women's Forum met virtually for the last time this year to discuss the topic of gratitude. Conversations explaining what gratitude looks like, how we can practice gratitude and as 2023 draws to a close, our overall reflections on the past year.

We opened by discussing what gratitude looks like. The group saw the past year as a celebration of life's every heartbeat, a testament to overcoming personal storms and emerging stronger because of the challenges thrust our way. As a collective, we agreed gratitude is the acknowledgment of being alive to witness the subtle beauty of each day—the moon, the stars, self-love, and for many in 2023 there was opportunity.

It was clear from the onset that we should be grateful for life's simplest yet most profound treasures, and those pleasures manifest in countless forms. 

But how do we embrace gratitude in our daily lives? The group's collective wisdom unveiled a myriad of practices, each a testament to gratitude's transformative power. This ranged from ਪਾਠ (Paath/ prayers), from journaling and meditation to how we interact with those near to us. Essentially, not being afraid to shower loved ones with affection - such as hugs and kisses - actions essentially that are heartfelt melodies in a community where displays of affection are often not the norm. We spoke deeply about nature and smiled at how gratitude resonates in the whisper of trees, the shimmer of stars, and the infinite embrace of the universe.

Reflecting on the past year or more reveals profound realisations. 2023 for many of the attendees was a year where for many of the participants - who as women are looking after everybody else - self-love took centerstage. Learning to be okay with saying no and taking time out to look after ourselves. Authenticity - and for some, freedom - became the cornerstone of happiness. An awakening to life's fleeting nature serves as a poignant reminder to seize every moment authentically, aligning actions with purpose to make the most of this life and not feeling guilty when you need to take time out to fill your own cup, acknowledging this is essential to fill the cup of others.

After a heartfelt discussion, the group then tried something new. Journaling. A poignant exercise for 5 minutes where we individually wrote a letter to express our gratitude. Each entry painted a portrait of love and appreciation to people and beings in life that we often take for granted. Many expressed their heartfelt thankfulness to their mothers, their fathers, their grandparents and for some, to God. 

As the group dispersed, gratitude lingers—a silent yet potent force that transforms lives, fostering a deeper connection with oneself, others, and the wider world.

In this journey of reflection and discovery, gratitude emerges not merely as an emotion but as a guiding light, inviting us to embrace life's intricacies with open arms and a grateful heart, including us all being grateful for the virtual Punjabi Women's Forum. 

As we embark on the next chapter, Chapter 2024, we are so grateful for the stories shared, noting their sensitivities and the courage in being able to share them in what has now become our own little ‘safe space’ and ‘brave space’. We look forward to hearing more about people’s experiences moving forwards.

You can find out more about the Punjabi Women’s Forum by visiting our Events page here.

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