I’ve heard a lot of talk about 2016 not being a great year. I’m not exactly sure why. For me, personally, it was a fairly good year. We were able to travel a little. There were some big milestones this year. At the beginning of November, Craig and I attended our fiftieth class reunion from Washington High School in Phoenix, It was lots of fun reconnecting with old friends and finding out what they’ve been up to.
At the end of November, we celebrated my mother’s ninetieth birthday. While not everyone was able to make it, we did have a good representation of family members as well as many of the residents where my mom lives.
On a sadder note, we had some dear ones leave us. My Uncle George–whose family moved him from Chino Valley, AZ to Kansas City, MO a few years ago–passed away. He was my mother’s youngest brother, leaving my mother as the last sibling. At the end of October, I lost a very dear friend, Norma Bennett. Then on the last day of November, my father-in-law passed away. While they will be greatly missed, we have fond memories to carry with us.
This is the time of year when we may feel moved to make resolutions. I haven’t really made any. As part of my preparation during Advent, I made a dream list that I think should give me enough to work on during this coming year.
Whether you make a list or not, I think we can all benefit from these words from author, Jon Gordon:
- “Stay positive. You can listen to the cynics and believe success is impossible or believe with God all things are possible.
- Each day when you awake, complete this statement: ‘My purpose today is ______.’
- Take a morning walk of gratitude. It creates a fertile mind for success. You can’t be stressed and thankful at the same time, and when you combine gratitude with physical exercise you give yourself a double-boost of positive energy and natural antidepressants.
- Instead of being disappointed about where you are, think optimistically about where you are going.
- Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a college kid with a maxed-out charge card.
- Believe that everything happens for a reason, and good things come from challenging experiences.
- Don’t waste energy on gossip, past issues, negative thoughts, and things you can’t control. Invest in the positive, present moment.
- Mentor someone and be mentored by someone.
- Live the 3 E’s: Energy. Enthusiasm. Empathy.
- Remember there’s no substitute for hard work.
- Zoom focus: Ask yourself, ‘What are the three most important things I need to do today?’
- Implement the ‘No complaining’ rule. Complaining is like vomiting; afterwards you feel better, but people around you feel sick!
- Read more books than you did last year.
- Get more rest. You can’t replace sleep with a double latte!
- Before bed, complete these statement: ‘I’m thankful for ___.’ ‘Today I accomplished ___.”
- Think of your mind like a garden. If you weed the negative and feed the positive for one day it doesn’t do much, but when you do it every day you create a magnificent garden.”
That is quite an extensive list, but I’m sure we can all find a few things we would like to make a part of our daily lives. Happy New Year to everyone.