Thoughts on a New Year

Try typing ‘new year’s day’ into your phone. You’ll probably find it altered to upper case. We know why that is: the cultural importance necessitates a certain gravitas in phonesville, and that’s understandable.

But time doesn’t mark us. Actually, it’s the other way around. The start of a new year (or your next birthday, for that matter) doesn’t dictate the requirements you ought to have reached. It doesn’t provide an expectation against which you should measure yourself. It doesn’t actually provide any standard whatsoever, it’s just the passing of a specific measurement of days. Yet concepts like resolutions can pressure us horribly and encourage us to succumb to declarations of intent, whether publicly or privately: it’s now or never!

The truth is, it’s neither.

We are the ones who mark our time. We decide how best to live; what we feel capable of achieving and what’s realistic to expect of ourselves. Time isn’t some concept we can outsource any of that shit to, it’s simply a measurement of something about which we are always fully in control: the pace we set ourselves to handle our business the best way we know how.

The last thing I want for you is to feel pressured by the start of another year. Even if you’d prefer to improve yourself or your situation right now, don’t let this focus on the next number to put on a date stamp make you feel any less capable or held back.

You own this.
Always did; always will.

There is no rush. Take your time and do it your way. The focus shouldn’t be your speed but your direction. Are you heading somewhere that’ll improve your sense of peace and well-being? If not, what does that look like and how do you start to get there? Let self-enquiry guide you, not the pressure of keeping up with new year fads.

My hope is that 2017 won’t bring you anything you wish for right now. I hope it’ll surprise you. Astound you. Resurrect your belief that life can bring goodness and fulfilment, and strengthen your hope in the fullness of time.