New Year’s has long been a favorite holiday of mine. I’m the queen of clean slates and a sucker for a good makeover. And unlike the green and red we associate with Christmas, the official color of New Year’s is bling. (With a name like Gold Dust, I’m naturally drawn to things that sparkle.)
As I work on this practice of living life in the present moment, and not the regretting the past or fearing the future, I’m amazed at how many clean slates we have at our disposal. Each year brings with it 365 new days. Each day offers plenty of opportunities to chart a new course — there’s one available the moment you decide to start over.
This concept of not having to wait until January 1 to begin again still has a profound effect on my life. When I find myself headed in the wrong direction, I don’t have to write off the entire day. Or month. Or year. If I have an extra piece of pizza (or three) at lunch, I can keep eating like that for the rest of the day. Or I can choose to start over and make a healthier choice at dinner that evening. The freedom to change direction the minute I realize I’m off course helps me get where I want to go so much faster than my previous mindset.
Does that mean I always get back on the wagon after I’ve fallen off? Absolutely not. Sometimes I pout. Sometimes I whine. Sometimes I don’t even realize that I’m heading in the wrong direction. I’m human. From what I hear, we all are.
The grace of being able to minimize the damage and self-sabotage that comes when I fall short of my ideal leaves me with more energy to devote to becoming the person I aspire to be — which produces the positive results that make it easier to stay on track in the first place.
So best wishes on 2016! As you get settled in this brand new year, and evidence of your human fallibility becomes clear, please remember you can hit the reset button any time you want. And while you’re at it, feel free to don some sequins and throw some confetti about too. There's always a reason to celebrate.