The clock struck twelve. The confetti and balloons dropped, and the band played Auld Lang Syne. People, even strangers hugged and kissed each other. It was New Year’s Eve. The anticipation of the New Year was in the air. What would it bring? How would this year be better than the next? When will we see a change in fortune? Would we enter a new relationship? Is there a new job in our future? Are the friends we have had for many years continue to be with us in this New Year?
We always look to the New Year with hope. Hope that things will change. Hope that we will change. Hope that situations, actions, and behaviors will change. We even hope that our hope will change. It is a new year. It is a new beginning. It is a chance to make things right. It is an opportunity for many of us to begin a new life.
The New Year has so much potential. It is a wonder and a mystery. It is a party, a celebration. And then it happens. All the change we vowed to make slowly and steadily become a faded memory or a tormenting nightmare. All the things we were going to do differently, the drink we were going to stop drinking, the person we were end our toxic friendships with all are back in our lives. The food we were not supposed to eat we consume within ten minutes after midnight. That person that we said we were not taking in to the New Year with us, is sleeping in our bed a week later…
When this happens, we begin to beat ourselves up. We become angry, upset, and fall deeper into the things we said we were going to give up. We begin to think of ourselves as a failure. Depression sinks in, and we begin to go back to the things that we were doing in the old year.
Here is what we forget…We have an entire year to make those changes. I mean the entire year. The “bad habits” we have collected did not just happen overnight. We collected them over time. Some things we grew into, others we were drawn to instantly. But the beauty is that we have an entire year to make those changes.
Yes, we will fall off the horse. Yes, we will find ourselves back in familiar surroundings because they are comfortable. We will eat, drink, smoke, and love the wrong people. But, if we begin to recognize these blunders as just a bump in the road and not a jump off the cliff, then we can recognize our errors, make the corrections, and take the time we need to make the changes we should make.
We all want to be better persons than we were last year. We all want a better life for our children and loved ones. Each year we vow to do things for the better, to make things right, to live better than we ever have before. Each year we see ourselves as failures because we made simple or huge mistakes. Yes, we made mistakes, but most are ones that can be corrected with a work, thought or deed. Yes, we have to pay for our mistakes, most of the time, it has not killed us, and if we really meditate on it, we are stronger because of it.
So Happy New Year….for those of us who have already broken a resolution, Yippee!!! We have all year long to make changes in our lives. Just remember that as long as you are better today than you were yesterday, you have made progress.