I don’t know if this is happening to many people outside my general circle of friends, but I know so many folks that have had a less-than-stellar start to their new year so far. This includes me, unfortunately, but nothing horrible has happened or anything. It has just failed to meet my hopes for maybe a fresh start—a bit of a reset. I definitely don’t make new year’s resolutions.

Perhaps having “big expectations” for resolutions and fresh starts puts too much pressure on what, in actuality, is simply a new day, week and month on the calendar. So much emphasis is put on this “New Year,” that when there either isn’t any change or, worse, things don’t go well at ALL, it’s way more crushing than if we just thought of it as “just another day or month”—a continuation of last year. We can either think of it that way, or just seriously lower the expectations. Set the bar really, really low! Expect virtually no change and make no plans for anything different! Ha.

I always have to remind myself that challenges equal growth. Hard to do when you’re in the midst of said challenges! But, looking back, there has almost always been some sort of appreciable emotional and mental expansion following each struggle or test life throws my way. No one welcomes these events, but it is apparently how we grow. 

So, instead of being annoyed by 2024 not starting out fantastically, I’ll just try to take it in stride and consider it part of the last several years of suck… I’ll choose the path of “refusing to give the negative any energy.” Or, in dog training terms (as I tend to relate most everything in my life), I won’t positively reward the negative. Hopefully this works for some of my friends as well! 

To those who have had a wonderful start to 2024: congratulations, and please send some of your good luck to me and my friends! Seriously, though, a very happy, healthy new year to one and all!