I just love a new year. It's like meeting a new friend - someone I'm excited to see every day, someone who offers new experiences in my life, someone who seems happy to see me too. It's kind of like new love. Anything can happen, all possibilities are open, and there's that little twinkle that makes me sort of giddy.
I don't like New Year's Resolutions though. I think they're something that sets us up for failure, because they're usually too big and ambitious to ever be realistic. We jump in with all our energy and enthusiasm, and then burn out quickly, like a long distance runner who bursts out at top speed, rather than pacing herself. Many times in the past, I've made long lists of resolutions, and managed to overwhelm myself and give up before I even got started.
These day I take a different approach. While a new year is a lovely fresh start, as the first few weeks go by, and the freshness fades, it helps me to remember to see every single day as a new creation. After all, the calendar is a human invention, and would mean very little if you could zoom out to the edges of the Universe and look at the real Big Picture. Every day we continue with a certain amount of what we were doing the day before, but we also start over, and have the option of doing some things, or everything, differently, more creatively, and with new enthusiasm. What if we got out of bed every morning, and greeted the day with a Happy New Year! ? Seems like it might be a fun experiment.
I have a long and growing list of things I'd like to do. Some are goals, some are projects, and some are just small changes I'd like to make in the way I manage my time. But I'm not making any resolutions. One reason resolutions don't work for me (and a lot of other people) is they're so... resolute. Flexibility is important, and so is leaving room for all the things I haven't thought of yet. I'm finding that it works best to focus on something I want to get done, and rather than map out a big intimidating strategy, just come up with one thing that will get me closer to my goal. Just one thing, the next thing, and then the next and the next. It's all baby steps. We're all always learning, and in many ways, we're all beginners.
I'd like to see us ease up on ourselves, encourage ourselves and others, and nurture and cooperate rather than compete, as if we were talking to babies, saying, "Yes! That's good! Take another step sweetie." I have a feeling we'd all get a lot more done, and we'd all be happier, more secure in ourselves, and more creative and giving with others. I'm looking forward to a year of small goals, changes in plans, fresh starts, flexibility, and happy surprises I haven't even begun to imagine yet. No big plans, no resolutions. Just baby steps.