2020 has come to an end and 2021 has just begun. What do you do at the beginning of a new year? I find that the holiday season makes me feel all cozy and reflective so this is the perfect time dust things off and freshen it all up. To start the new year on a good note, there are a few simple things that can be very helpful.
This doesn’t have to be anything complicated. Add some fun rituals to it if you want – or not. I see so many people talking about wanting to say good riddance to the old year, but I think this can be turned into something with a more positive spin.
How to Start the New Year on a Good Note
Count your blessings from the previous year.
If you only do one thing to prepare for a new year, I strongly suggest you begin by taking stock of all of the wonderful things that happened in the previous year. Yes, even with the outgoing year being one with a pandemic!
These don’t have to be major events like the birth of a new baby or a wedding. If ever there was a time to celebrate the little things, it’s now!
Sure, we had the birth of my grandson William in 2020, but since we’ve been in isolation most of the year, it’s really those little things that carry us from day to day. Walter has the funniest little dance moves and if you tell him to shake his booty he will. It makes me laugh every time.
William loves to make funny noises and flap his arms around. If I mimic them back to him, his whole face lights up and sometimes, I even get some giant giggles out of him. He’ll repeat them back to me and we can go back and forth over and over again. He loves it!
I’ve taken up crocheting again. It’s been ages since I did any crocheting and I’m really enjoying how meditative and relaxing it can be. I skipped right over the “sourdough bread baking” phase of the pandemic, but I’ve ordered a cheese making kit and I’m pretty excited about it!
A local church is very involved in presenting online Mass, prayer services, rosaries, and novenas. I’ve found that I have a great love for the rosary and find it incredibly calming. I just joined a “read the Bible in chronological order” and already I’ve learned so much more about books of the Bible I thought I already knew.
Your blessings don’t have to be huge showy things. In fact, if we learn to embrace the little everyday joys, our lives become day after day, moment after moment of blessings. We no longer wait for the those “special” times. The ordinary becomes sacred.
Let go of negativity.
Hopefully, as you count the good in your life, the impact the bad had on you will become overshadowed and diminish. But this is a good time to let go of any negativity that remains.
You might find that a good cry (or scream) will release it so you can move on. Sometimes you might want to try something a little more symbolic. Write down the negativity and burn it (or tear it up into tiny little pieces) and let it go as you do.
I’ve found that reaching out to like-minded people on Twitter can be really therapeutic. And, I’ve found it very freeing to let go of the people who bring nothing but negativity and stress into my life.
We may not forget the bad things that happen to us, but we can get rid of the power that they have over us and our feelings.
Set one goal for January.
Forget about making grand plans for overhauling your entire life come January 1. That’s just setting yourself up for failure. Pick one. There’s nothing magical about new year’s resolutions. You can set new goals at any time of year!
But, we tend to feel more motivated in January so use that motivation to spur you on. Set one goal. Make it specific. Break it down into steps if needed. Decide how you will keep yourself accountable.
My goal for this month: Focus on my sleep hygiene. I’m designating a bedtime (same time every night) and establishing a bedtime routine.
Once you’ve had success with that one goal, you can always set a new one next month. Spacing them out and riding the success of one goal into the next usually works far better than reaching far too high all at once at the beginning of each year.
A few simple steps at the beginning of the new year can take you into one filled with even more blessings and joy than ever before.
I read these three books at the beginning of each new year. These INSPIRING BOOKS are a great way to get into the right mindset for the best year ever!