A brand new box of crayons, a new car with that new-car smell, the start of a new school year or a new job, a new journal or sketch pad… there is something especially wonderful about starting over. It is freeing and exhilarating to put old messes behind and begin again with the desire of creating something wonderful, the hope that this time will be better than all the rest.
And so it is with the New Year. Whether last year was the best year or worst year ever, the prospect of opening a new calendar with crisp, clean pages waiting to be filled is exciting. It’s the free ticket to a clean slate we all receive every year. It’s funny, because as a deeply spiritual person, I believe that there are infinite do-overs with the Divine. I’ve never bought into the idea that God has a little black book and keeps track of whether we’ve been good or bad like Santa does. I believe that each day, each moment, is a chance to make ourselves new, we don’t really need a new year to make that happen. But, as humans, we are apparently highly symbolic creatures and work best creating ourselves anew when given outside representations of that fresh start.
So, let your soul and psyche take advantage of this once-a-year occurrence. Use this time of transition not simply as an excuse to party, but to reflect and to hope. Sure, pop open that champagne with friends, sing Auld Lang Syne (days gone by) and cheer at the stroke of midnight. But also take the time to consciously reflect on the year gone by – the good, the bad and the ugly. Give thanks for the love you’ve experienced, the strength you’ve had to get through, the friends who have shared life with you, the things you’ve learned and the experiences you’ve had. And then look ahead with hope to the new year ahead. You don’t need to make resolutions that won’t last more than two weeks, but hold an image in your mind of the person you are trying to become, the relationships you are hoping to forge or strengthen, and the accomplishments that will feed your soul (as opposed to your ego). Know that this image shimmers beside you, accessible even when you feel you are most failing that image. At any moment the Divine is there to help you reach out and grasp hold… you won’t need to wait for another New Year.
Peace and blessings,