From the stroke of midnight the day of Christmas, my mind has been rolling over all of the possibilities that await in the upcoming year. When I was younger, the dawn of a New Year meant little more than having to remember to change the date when filling out homework and tests. It wasn't until the year my daughter was born, just two weeks after New Year's Day, that I started to think differently about each and every new year.
For the last week I have thought long and hard about the things I would like to achieve in the upcoming year. Many of my goals are simple, and those are the ones that often fall by the wayside. For example, I want to spend less time thinking of myself and more time thinking about others, and while this sounds like a very easy task, it can be incredibly difficult to shift one's thoughts away from "my wants, my needs and me, me, me!" Nonetheless, I resolve not to use that as an excuse to be selfish.
Another thing I want to focus on this year is being kinder to myself. For far too long I have allowed the shadows of things past to darken my outlook. Too many times have I said, "So much of my life has been hard, why should I expect it to be easy." This year, I will hold my head up high and brave whatever storms life has in store for me by remembering that the earth itself is always cleaner and more serene in the aftermath of a storm, even if there are pieces to be picked up. I will think of every failure as an opportunity to reinvent, and rise from the ashes like a phoenix.
I will devote more of my time to writing and publishing in the coming year, always bearing in mind not to wait for inspiration or motivation, but to motivate and inspire myself through action instead. I will spend more time reading this year and less time watching television. It's too easy to sit down and tune out, even though I enjoy the comfort of a good book far more.
I forgive all who have done me wrong, and hope that my enemies can find it in their hearts to forgive me as well.
And this year's superficial, but still incredibly important, resolution... I will go away for vacation in 2009.
Now, here is my wish for all of my friends this year:
May you always have walls for the winds,
a roof for the rain, tea beside the fire,
laughter to cheer you, those you love near you,
and all your heart might desire.
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