The High Holy Days are imbued with a special light that gives us the chance to make changes in our lives that seemed out of our reach during the rest of the year.
Day 1 Rosh Hashana – Asking the Big Questions
Looking Within: Renewal of our Relationships. How am I doing with friends, family, community, and work? Do I owe anyone an apology? Do I need to return a borrowed item? Can I mend a broken connection? Have I left a promise undone? Make a list.
Day 2 – More Looking: Self Care
Am I taking care of my physical body? Have I had doctor and dental check-ups? Have I listened to my body’s needs? Am I getting enough rest and quiet time? Am I caring for my changing challenges? Do I pay attention to my diet? How can I do better?
Day 3 – Much More Looking
Within What am I doing to grow spiritually? What new activity have I tried or re-introduced into my routine? Is there a comforting routine in my daily, weekly, or monthly schedule? Do I have someone in my circle to guide me? (If not, seek advice.)
Day 4 – Am I Angry?
Is there someone in my life that has hurt me? Have I retaliated? What is MY part? Can I forgive or start to forgive? Can I ask for forgiveness? Do I need help with this?
Day 5 – Am I Afraid?
Yes, I am human; we all have fears. What/who frightens me? Why am I fearful? Are they real or imagined fears? Are there things I do in my life to reduce those fears? Are my attempts to reduce those fears healthy?
Day 6 – Am I Honest?
Do I practice honesty with myself and with others? Do I justify “exceptions from the truth” to justify a perceived positive result? Am I more concerned with seeking approval than being truthful? Do I avoid making changes when I am not being honest with how I feel about a relationship, decision, or lifestyle?
Day 7 – Balance:
Where is the Joy, Love, and Play in my Life? Does my life have real fun space? Is it enough? Do I actively seek enriching experiences, entertainment, and generosity? Can I turn off my social media and electronic devices for a part of my day or week? Do I honor and spend time in nature? Do I listen? Can I say, “Not now”?
Day 8 – Patience:
Tell me Yes, Tell me No, But Please Don’t Tell me to Wait. Is time always a commodity, or can I slow down? Does my agenda supersede all others? Can I stay in the moment, or do I live in the past and future? How can I do better?
Day 9 – Hope and Gratitude:
Every Day is a New Beginning. We can start over any time. Prayer and meditation can take us to a place of unselfish and focused spiritual growth. Even something very, very small makes a difference. Am I willing to add just one tiny, new practice to my daily routine or more? Do I need help with this?
Day 10 – Service:
Giving Without Reward – the Greatest Gift of All. The path to peace and joy lies in the ability to do for others, when our motives are not self-serving. Even the smallest token or act of kindness is enough each day.
Taking Action – Smile. “Thank you.” An anonymous gift or gesture. A kind word to a stranger.
- Comforting the sick
- Supporting the grieving
- Sharing a talent
- Protecting the natural world