It’s that time of year. Renewal.

240685685-new-years-day-quote-the-week-at-a-glance-12-28-anextraordinaryday_net_

I was in the mood to write something snarky at first, but after I spent a little time thinking about this subject, my mood definitely changed to something more wishful and contemplative.

Every year, after the merry excesses of the Christmas (or Hanukkah, or whatever winter holiday you choose to celebrate, if at all – there, I think I covered everyone, right?) we all seem ready for that fresh start that a new calendar year brings to us.  The inspirational quotes about renewal, beginnings, and new possibilities start making the rounds. This year, especially, there is a real fervency about getting a new slate of 365 days to bring about the things we hope for, and possibly make up for a cruel 2016.  I mean, seriously – although each year brings about its share of ups, downs, heartbreaks, and joys, I truly feel like 2016 seemed especially brutal – so I’m definitely down with this whole spirit of renewal and new beginnings.

Personally, I don’t make new year resolutions.  I learned at a young age that they are useless.  Change only comes about because you truly want it, and not because the calendar says it’s January 1st.  But I do try to call to mind each January my hopes for the coming year, and almost always they look something like this, from two of my favorite wordsmiths:

368735935b5d2fe2db84bb327830a932

503887f1bc1635607556e4fd57c13d24

Go on…you can do it too. Join the fun, the hope, the longing, for a much better 2017.  We can all hope, right? We can all choose to renew that faith in a better tomorrow, and maybe it will come.

via Daily Prompt: Renewal

My Wish.

my_wish_by_rascal_flatts-117551

Here it is, seven days into the new year, and I am still mulling over what my hopes are for 2016. I don’t like making trite resolutions that just get broken a month later, but I find that laying out my hopes for the coming year to be a positive way for me to focus.

2015 was good, albeit bumpier than “normal”…there was more stress than usual, with loved ones going through various health issues, changes…but all in all, I can’t complain. Everyone that I hold extremely dear made it through the year and we all have our smiles still.

When thinking about the coming year, I keep hearing this song in my head, from Rascal Flatts:

My Wish

I hope the days come easy and the moments pass slow
And each road leads you where you want to go
And if you’re faced with the choice and you have to choose
I hope you choose the one that means the most to you
And if one door opens to another door closed
I hope you keep on walkin’ ‘til you find the window
If it’s cold outside, show the world the warmth of your smile
But more than anything, more than anything

My wish for you
Is that this life becomes all that you want it to
Your dreams stay big, your worries stay small
You never need to carry more than you can hold
And while you’re out there gettin’ where you’re gettin’ to
I hope you know somebody loves you
And wants the same things too
Yeah, this is my wish

I hope you never look back but you never forget
All the ones who love you
And the place you left
I hope you always forgive and you never regret
And you help somebody every chance you get
Oh, you find God’s grace in every mistake
And always give more than you take…

That’s basically what I wish, for me, for my family and dearest friends…

My 2016 hopes are to make the good choices when it comes to who and what I spend my precious hours and minutes on; I hope to slow down and savor my time more, multitasking less. I  hope that I manage to smile even when I may not necessarily feel like it – because I truly have so much to be happy about. I hope that I can be a positive presence in the lives of the people I come into contact with – doing my part to make the world a better place by being the best version of me.

I hope that my loved ones all experience enough joy and laughter that it carries them gracefully through the inevitable tough moments that each year brings.

This is my wish.

New year.

The new year begins, and the resolutions begin. I have never thought  much of this tradition – what  basically amounts to tallying  up one’s regrets and transforming  them into resolve that crumbles before January ends.

I have always felt the beginning of a new year as  I feel about  all beginnings – that they are the seeds of hope. And so I don’t resolve, I just renew my hopes, for myself, for everyone…

To love more, judge less.
To enjoy more, complain less.
To savor more, hurry less.
To embrace more, fear less.
To give more, consume less.
To listen more, speak less.

To hope more, and spread that hope as far as possible.

image