BEGINNINGS: HOW TO CREATE A JOY-FULL NEW YEAR
What is your New Year's Resolution?
A new year, a new you. Fresh starts. Time to turn over a new leaf.
There are many cliches about the 1st of January and beginning again with a clean slate. This can put pressure on us to overhaul our lives, making us feel as if we have not accomplished what we set out to.
And yet our deep-seated desire to change and create afresh is woven with magic. A cycle that we repeat each year, making resolutions to change and improve our selves and our lives. But everything has a season, even us. We ebb and flow, and we do not need to put such stress on ourselves to do everything all at once. We are free to begin again and to grow. Though we should remind ourselves that nothing in nature blooms all year through. But the impetus to change is a strong one.
Within each of us, a tiny spark ignites when the cold, dark nights of winter draw in. But we do not need to try to be a new version of ourselves - who we are and what we have is more than enough. We need to see our uniqueness and inner value. We need to embrace who we are so that we can start to live with truth and conviction. We are the spark. The light that will guide our way will come from within.
Beginnings are full of hope and ripe with the sense of possibility. We all have to start somewhere. But wherever we start from, we may encounter a sense of staring into a dark night sky with no light to guide our path. But cracks of light will start to appear if only we can get comfortable with the darkness. The stars will come out.
Start where you are, from what is here right now. The present moment is not yet written. The blank page before you stretches ahead, clear as snow. Put your own footprints in it and make your own path. Whatever we may have experienced in our past is no longer our present, yet it is a gift. It exists only in memory. It is behind us. We must try not to look into the future because none of us has a crystal ball. Nor should we want one, because then where would the adventure be? Possibility is a word full of creative power and choice. If we open our hearts to the unknown, it will weave wonder into our lives. If we have faith and walk in our own truth, we will be lead to unexpected and surprising joys. Sometimes the biggest joys in life are the everyday moments. Often it is the humdrum little things that mean the most, like a steaming mug of tea and a warm hug from a loved one.
We may take our lessons from what has gone before, but we should not use the past as a rule book from which we may not deviate. Use it rather as a jumping off point. Leap off into the unknown from a place of solid ground. You know what worked for you in the past and what didn't. But more important is that you know what made your heart glad and your spirit soar. Follow joy and do what delights you and is healing for yourself and those around you.
The new year is a chance to put your life in perspective, to give thanks for what has passed and what we have gained from it. Even the darkest of days where it seems like we have little left can teach us something. We survived and we are strong. There are lessons that only pain can teach us. And if we let it, we can become more human, more compassionate and more understanding from it. Gratitude for the happy moments that we have savoured is key to a happy life. Remembering to be thankful will magnify our happiness right now. So start right here and now. Start where you are, and take that first brave leap into the unknown and live the life you choose to create.