Honoring a New Year
- Exercise patience whenever possible, we never fully know the burdens other people carry.
- Let go of bitterness. As recently deceased Nelson Mandela once said, “Resentment is like drinking poison and then hoping it will kill your enemies.”
- Be happy for small pleasures. In retrospection, they could hold greater value than large ones.
- Try something new. Should you do the enterprise well, great! If you don’t, feel good about your attempts (and do it anyway if you enjoy it).
- If it doesn’t hurt anyone, brings you happiness, and puts an added spring in your step, go for it. We should reward ourselves every now and then.
- Enjoy the moment, whether it’s a baby’s smile, loved one’s accomplishment, or animated interaction with a neighbor. After all, these are the things memories are made of.
- Be kind. Few people get intrinsic pleasure from being harsh, but many feel uplifted when they are considerate of others.
- Remember that actions teach more effectively than words. Thus, live the example you wish to impart.
- Remain dignified. Mimicking negative behavior will neither even the score nor make you feel better.
- Go the extra mile. Even if others fail to recognize your efforts, you will know.
- Give back. In the short term, it might seem taxing. In the long-term, the rewards are immeasurable.
- Cry if you feel the need. Sometimes we just need to get it out and then everything seems fresh again.
- Forgive yourself. Everyone makes mistakes: we can’t assume it will not happen to us.
- Pray, meditate, or set periods aside for calm: it nourishes the psyche.
Every person enters the New Year with imperfections. Nonetheless, growth is possible no matter what our age. Therefore, make 2014 a very good year, and remember we are the ones who fashion our own happiness.