Tonight we say, Happy New Year! But do we really mean it? How can we actually have a happy new year?
Depending on your age, think about how many times you’ve actually said those words. How old were you when you first said it? Do you remember it throughout the year or quickly drink to it and forget about it?
Not every year is great, but I do not believe every year is terrible either. Even with the added heartaches, disappointments, loss employment, the loss of loved ones, and those unforeseen events. There is good every year. With each new birth, there is hope. With each year of academics, there is knowledge. With each new skill, there is productivity.
So maybe, just maybe, there should be a little more thought in this yearly statement. More thought, fewer resolutions. Now don’t get me wrong, I’ve made dozens of resolutions myself and a few of them have actually happened. Unfortunately, the majority has not, but that’s on me. So why do we continue to say things we know are doomed to carry to fruition? Instead, give some serious thought to what it is that is important to you and strive to make that happen.
An example? Well, instead of setting a goal of losing weight, promise to give yourself something healthy to eat every day. Instead of spending money on a gym membership right away, go for a walk in a park. Or volunteer at a local shelter to walk one of their dogs once a week. (That’s 52 walks by the end of a year. Not a marathon workout in any stretch of the imagination – but a little something good to do – for yourself and for a furry soul that benefits from your company and the exercise too).
What I’m trying to say is to do something you can do to celebrate YOU! Without guilt. Without selfishness, but selflessness. Once you get used to doing one thing that feels good and does something good, hopefully, you’ll want to do more. For myself personally, I’ve noticed if I am working out, I feel great. I sleep better, eat better, have a better attitude and take longer to get upset about stuff.
But when I stop working out, I don’t sleep as well, I’ll eat stuff I normally wouldn’t touch and will quickly snap to anger. As I continue this journey as a writer, this past year I stopped myself and allowed others to dictate how I felt about the process of trying to enter the world of publishing. Letting rejection block my progress. Doubting my abilities. Getting frustrated and second-guessing myself stalled my motivation and direction.
Just as quickly, with support and encouragement, the direction turned from one of self-pity and deep sadness to rejuvenation and excitement. It is a state of mind, not a promise, not a resolution, a state of mind to persevere. Without which my book will continue to live in my computer and not for sale in a bookstore!
It might surprise you as much as it surprised me that inspiration, which we know is found in unexpected places for sure, made a huge difference in my perspective with three larger than life men. Literally and figuratively. Which unexpectedly yet ultimately helped my writing. As much as I lean on the authors and writers in my life to guide me. Three men who have nothing to do with my writer’s journey stepped into my life. In the last few months, I’ve had the pleasure and honor to ‘meet’ David Goggins, Steve Weatherford, and Ed Mylett. (The latter two and I have chuckled on Instagram together. David’s new book Can’t Hurt Me is a New York Times Best Seller second only to Becoming Michelle) If you do not know their stories, check them out for yourself. Listen to their PodCasts, dive into their thoughts and see if you take away anything that will help you with whatever struggle you may have. Whether it is writing, weight, self-doubt, or any personal challenges.
I wish I could give you perseverance in a box to open and use whenever you wish. But it doesn’t come wrapped up with a bow. It is found deep inside of you and only becomes awakened when you choose to. So that is my New Year’s wish for you and for me. To ignite unexpected inspiration, be it a candle, a flare or a sparkler. Find the light that leads you to be a healthier you, more productive in what matters most to you and ultimately a happier you in this New Year.
Happy New Year to ALL of us!