Friday, January 1, 2021

Happy New Year! and Some Un-resolutions for Joyful Living


Happy New Year! For those unfamiliar with northern winter climates, I'll tell you that the image above is snow. This snow is not new, yet has no tracks or marks on it, and it serves as an analogy for the new year. This snow fell last year and remains, just as parts of 2020 remain with us into 2021. But what remains has not marked this snow. Here it is, crisp and untouched. What can we make of it? It's ours to decide. What can we make of our new year? At the end of 2021, will we be glad of the tracks we've made? 

A new year presents challenges and responsibilities. A turn of a calendar page is not magic. I'm sure I'm not alone in making and breaking resolutions year after year. This year, I realized that the things I usually resolved to do felt more like punishment. So I'm going to make some un-resolutions that I can actually keep that will increase my joy. My list is in progress and subject to change, but here are a few items:

Eat a bite of chocolate every day.

Listen more to music.

Read more, generally, and read more poetry, specifically.

Look at--really look at--works of art.

No, these are not SMART goals. These are just life-enriching things that often get pushed aside in daily busyness. How will you add more joy this year? What tracks will you leave in 2021?

"...Lift up your hearts.
Each new hour holds new chances
For new beginnings...." is from the incredible poem by Maya Angelou,"On The Pulse of Morning," written for and delivered at President Clinton's inauguration in 1993. Here is the entire poem: