Happy new year! People all over the world recognize the Julian calendar, and today as the first day of a new year. Chinese new year will occur on February 10 this year (the first new moon occurring between January 21 and February 20.) Some celebrated the new year on the Winter Solstice, others will celebrate on Imbolc, February 2, Ground Hog Day- I suppose Punsxatawney Phil says "happy new year" on exiting the burrow.
Regardless the date a person chooses to consider the new year, it is a fact that the world makes a revolution around our Sun every 365 days- and a bit. Over thousands of years, humans have learned to live with and tell time by the days and seasons of the Earth. And when it's time to take down last year's calendar and put up a new one, it's also time to look back and forward all at once.
What happened last year that we would like to see behind us for good? What didn't happen that we wish had? Can we make it happen this year? Or can we dispel what happened last year if we resolve to do so? People all over the place look forward to looking forward, to moving forward, to making changes for the better- usually tied to habits and behaviors that may have served them less than well in the past year- or years.
Do you make new years resolutions? Is there something you would like to do for yourself or others in the coming year to make your life or their -or both- better?
Or do you tend to live every day with the intention of making the next day better, rather than the next year- or just to keep things going as they are, if all is well?
I love to flip the page of every calendar in the house and office every month. I have plenty of calendars. I get them in the mail from causes I support, from my long time local credit union, from the hardware store, from family or friends. I love to flip the page of my appointment book every week, too, moving the few items I did not tick off the previous week to the new week. Rarely do I lament not getting something done that was on the list, though I do love making those little checkmarks with my pencil- and no, I do not use a computer or phone calendar. Those are useless to me. I like to write things down and then look at them frequently. Otherwise I forget them. And no, I don't like to be annoyed by the sound of some reminder bell. I can just carry my book with me and look at it when I feel like doing so. I suppose I could make a new year's resolution to change that habit. But if I did, this would not be better for me or for others or for the world.
But I digress.
Or do I?
What is a new year's resolution, and why do we make them? Does it make us feel better? Do we stick to them, and then life magically becomes grander and more enjoyable? And if we resolve to do something different(ly), why wait for January 1, or February 10, or our birthday or whenever? Why not do something different as soon as we realize we want to? And yes, because we want to, not because we feel like we should for some reason.
I did not make any resolutions this year. Some days I want to do something different, so I do, or at least I make a plan for doing it so put the wheels in motion. Some days I am perfectly happy to do what I usually do, and leave it at that.
Does this mean I have not been looking back over the past year and processing as I also consider the opportunities ahead in this year? It does not. It takes time, and because today is January 1 does not mean I'm done.
However and whenever you celebrate the new year, may you find blessings in every day.