Making a fresh start…any day of the year
“The birds they sang at the break of day Start again I heard them say Don’t dwell on what has passed away or what is yet to be”
Leonard Cohen stops me in my tracks every time I hear him growling out the above lyrics of Anthem, calling us to forgive, to let go and to start again no matter how battered and broken we are. If ever there is a time we collectively need encouragement, and to feel strong and resourceful it has to be now.
Perhaps you have made some New Year resolutions. You may be right on track or you may have broken them by now. Whichever way it is, starting over takes great courage, resilience and discipline. A fresh start demands a clean slate. Wiping the slate clean, when all you have ever known is written all over it, is the hardest part. Many times we are held back by the tangled web of previous failures, commitments, emotions and barriers. This is all old baggage. It is now 2012. You have a fresh start. Let go of last year, and start anew.
Set new dreams in your head and feed them happy positive thoughts. Give thanks for another day, another chance to grow a new way of life. Change is hard. Changing many things at once can be so overwhelming we can give up before we start. So start small. Start with your number one and follow two simple guidelines…
Decide what matters most today. Forget about your goals for all of this year. Instead, decide: what do you want to do today? What matters most to you, to your life? What are you most passionate about, right now? What would give you the most fulfilment? What will serve you well?
This might be something you work on all year, or it might just last a month, or it might last a week or a few days, or just today. It doesn’t matter. What matters is today — that you’re going to work on this with all your heart, today. It might be the same thing that mattered most yesterday, or it might not be. That isn’t important. What’s important is today — right now. Be passionate, be happy, right now.
Choose to be happy Don’t look at happiness as something that will come when you’re done with this goal, or when you’ve attained a certain accomplishment or certain amount of wealth or material goods. Don’t look at happiness as a destination, something that you’ll get later. Happiness is possible right now. When you push it back until later, it’ll never come. When you learn to be happy now, it’ll always be here.
When you’re doing whatever you’re passionate about, whatever matters most, whatever you decide is worthy of your time and heart and focus … be happy! You’re doing what you love and you can do it every day. If your new life starts to curl up round the edges just remember you can make a fresh start every single day — not just on January 1st. The paradox of Leonard Cohen’s words reminds us in a beautiful humane way, with all our imperfections and broken promises, light will eventually shine through. The lesson here is to accept ourselves exactly how we are and to accept life, exactly as it is and make the most of what you have got.
“Ring the bells that still can ring Forget your perfect offering There is a crack, a crack in everything That’s how the light gets in.”
May 2012 be fill your lives with blessings, Happy New Year to you all. Until next time, Aileen.
© Aileen McGee