With the New Year coming, many of us find ourselves in a state of reflection and evaluation. We reflect back on the past year’s joys and pains. We often set new goals for ourselves and set out to achieve great miraculous things in the upcoming new twelve months laid out before us.
Why is it that every New Year we come up with a new, or sometimes even repeated, list of what we feel we are not, yet long to be? There seems to be something cyclical in our nature. We find that the turning over of the calendar calls to our soul to reevaluate ourselves. We vow to make a fresh start, vastly improving on the “you” that existed pre-January? We vow to eat better, exercise more, pray more, meditate more, complain less, and stress less. So many things we want to do and be. So many things we long for. Many times we think achieving this list will finally make us happy once and for all.
I have a different philosophy on the upcoming New Year’s resolutions that you may be considering. Reflect on this a bit before you devote yourself to a full-fledged overhaul of all that you are.
What if, instead of feeling like we need to revamp the whole package, we focused on ways to broaden our core gifts?
We all have unique gifts we bring to the world. I believe we have been designed to be a unique combination of quirks, talents, jagged edges and soft tenderness that enable us to be exactly what this world needs right now, right here. So while we may wish we were thinner, kinder, healthier or more fiscally responsible … what are you to this world already, right now? What are your great gifts that you naturally exude, and how can you use those to shine a light that surrounds you?
Self-improvement is a worthwhile endeavor, something to help lead us to be better people. But let’s not sidestep or minimize what we naturally are at the fiber of our being. Maybe the way to improve our lives is to delve more deeply into the core of who we are instead of wishing to be something different.
We spend a lot of our time viewing and envying the light of others. We wish for longer legs, a happier outlook, a better job, a better relationship. What if their light is not our color? Do not ignore the shade of light that only you bring. What is the color of your special unique light and how can you better carry that out into the world?
Maybe you have endured an abusive or painful relationship? Instead of shunning that in shame and secrecy, ask what glory can be brought by your trials? How can that part of who you are bring light into the world?
Maybe you lost your job this year or, god forbid, your partner? You are suddenly in a unique position to have a void to fill? What can you best do with that void? Where does the world need your special unique set of talents, ability to love and the spirit in your soul that you shine?
Are you wonderful with children, but yours are gone? How can the core of you be used to better this wonderful world we live in? How can you connect more light in people through the joy only you can bring into lives?
Instead of feeling the arrival of the New Year as a call to reform and reshape all that you are, maybe this year recognize it as a chance to celebrate and deepen all that you already are. You were designed to be you for a very special purpose. I encourage you to embrace and share that role more deeply than ever before with the world.