“A New Year is the beginning of a blank 365 page book….write a good one!” I just love the thought of what a new year will bring and this quote is the first thing I write on the first page of every one of my new journals each year. It is a reminder that I have a whole new year to make each day count. I think about the things I would like to accomplish and write out my goals and say a prayer to be in the will of God and look forward to what the year will bring.
As I get older, I am reminded of a quote my dearly departed grandfather, Albert, used to say: “The days are long but the years are short.” And oh how right he was. When I was younger, I didn’t really quite get it, but now I really do. So for me, it is important to make every day, and year, count as best as I can; and I believe starting on a positive note will help me to do this.
I look around and I see my boys getting older spending more time with friends and doing their own things. Everyone around me, including myself, is getting older and at times, it seems like the time has escaped me. Makes me wonder…..where has all the time gone?
This year I have decided that I am going to remain positive and to the best of my ability, I am going to cross all items off my daily to-do list and start out with a positive mindset. I have also decided that there are a few things that I can do to make this happen. Some things I have been doing year to year, and some I am going to start today.
HOW TO START THE NEW YEAR OFF ON A POSITIVE NOTE
Write Down Your Goals
To me, writing down my goals for the year is so important. (Click here to read my post about setting realistic goals). It gives me a sense of focus and reminds me that I have a vision for what my year will look like if I accomplish everything on my list.
It is important to remember that God’s plans supersede ours, so it is important to pray about your goals and for guidance in decision making. God knows what’s best for us and that gives me so much comfort knowing that no matter what I plan, God’s got me covered, no matter what.
Forget What Other People Think
Seriously….does it really matter what other people think? I used to be so wrapped up in what other people thought that it was uncomfortable at times. I am living my life in the best way I can and no one has the same purpose or plan for their lives as I have…or you have….or anyone has. God‘s plan for us is specific to each one of us and no one else. As long as I am in His will, it does not matter what other people think. This is hard sometimes to do, but so necessary to live your best life.
Learn to Turn Negative Thoughts into Positive Ones
Although it may seem impossible, being positive is not really all that hard, even when bad things are happening. There is always a positive point to every situation, trial, or tribulation. We may not see it at the time, but the good will always come through at some point.
No matter what the situation may be, when I feel like there is so much negativity, I always find a place to sit and be quiet, say a prayer, and find the positive side….you will be surprised at the list of positives that you can come up with when you take the time to search your heart and mind. Deep down, there is always a lesson to learn, a problem to solve, or a good outcome awaiting. Focus on the positives to keep the negatives from piling up. Remember, what you put out, you get back. Positivity breeds positivity, but the opposite is also true. Which would you rather have?
Write a NOT To-Do List
What are some things that you do NOT want to do anymore this New Year? Maybe it’s time to NOT say yes to every single thing that someone asks you to do. Maybe you are NOT going to touch your phone when someone is talking to you. Maybe you will decide that you are NOT going to be late to anything this year.
The NOT to do list can be endless. To me, this is an important part of goal setting. Creating this list helps with your actual to do list because it serves as a reminder to complete the things that you have set up to accomplish on your list of goals. I recommend trying it this year. You may find that you kick old habits, find a new sense of yourself, and focus on the things and people most important to you.
Change Your Every Day Surroundings
This is something that I like to do a couple of times a year. I’m not talking about moving or traveling, although sometimes those things help as well, I’m talking about your every day surroundings.
Anyone who knows me, knows that I love to rearrange my furniture, change my home décor items, and re-organize my cabinets and closets. These are what I consider my every day surroundings. Doing this gives me a sense of newness and simplification that is needed when I am feeling bored with the things around me. Even switching my couches around makes a difference to me.
To switch out my décor, I simply move things to other rooms or go to Thrift Shops or Estate Sales and buy things that are new to me and paint them or repurpose them and add them to my collection. It doesn’t really have to cost a lot and can really brighten up a room. For example, I just moved my dining room rug to my living room and I love it even more in its new space.
These are just a few suggestions to start the year off on a positive note throught positive changes and actions. There are so many other things that you can do as well. My prayer for us all is to live our lives in a positive mode with our eyes focused on all good things and striving to live the lives we were created to live.