Well, here we are. In just a few more hours, we will see 2017 out, and welcome 2018. New Year’s Eve seems to always bring out the philosophical and spiritual sides of most of us, and I guess I’m no different.
I don’t make New Year’s Resolutions. I stopped doing that years ago when I came to my senses and realized how silly and futile they really are. That was my plan again this year–no resolutions. Then, yesterday, my friend Mark, a talented writer, posted the following on Facebook:
Resolutions and goals are necessary to living a fully healthy and satisfied life. But these resolutions also come cloaked in judgment. The greatest lie we tell ourselves this time of year begins with, “If only I was …” You don’t have to like who you see in the mirror, but you do have to live with him. And it’s a lot easier to make those changes in your life if you aren’t beating yourself up along the way. So as the world mandates us to be better versions of ourselves for 2018, maybe the most important resolution we can make is to be more forgiving of ourselves–to realize that it’s OK not to be OK. And a funny thing happens when you begin to practice self-forgiveness. That person in the mirror begins to look a lot more like the person you wanted all along. That reflection begins to look more and more like … you. –Mark B.
I have to tell you that this post spoke to me deeply. Mark is right: our resolutions are “cloaked in judgment.” They require us to admit all of our shortcomings and see ourselves through the prism of all our faults. No wonder they don’t stick! Guilt, shame, anger, resentment, and unforgiveness are only short-term motivators at best. Before long, we have to walk away from them, or we become unable to function on even the most basic level.
There are a lot of things about me that I don’t particularly care for and that need to change. But, what if I didn’t enter 2018 focused on those things? What if I entered 2018 focused on being a little easier on myself–on being OK with not being OK? What if I started 2018 not by forgetting, but by embracing and learning from the auld lang syne?
What if you did, too?
This year I am making a resolution…
BE IT RESOLVED: In 2018, I will not strive for perfection, nor will I shun the imperfect man I am. I will work to become a better version of myself only in the light of who I AM, and not in the shadow of who I wish I could be. In 2018, I will not turn away from the man in the mirror, but I will look at him until I finally see me.
What about you?
Happy New Year, friends! May 2018 be the year we all, finally, see ourselves!