As 2016 comes to an end, here are five wishes for 2017:
May things not be as terrible as we fear.
Yes, challenging times are coming our way as a result of certain elections and political appointments. No one knows how things are going to turn out, but right now all signs are pointing to danger. Let’s hope that the signs are wrong, and that things will be okay.
Even if things do turn out to be bad and difficult, may we stand in solidarity with people who need our help and support- may we remember to care for those around us and to act as a community rather than as unconnected people. May we make things better by the compassion in our hearts and the way we deal with whatever happens.
May you meet one new person who changes your life for the better.
Connection with other people is one of the most important parts of being human. Through relationships with the people around us we are able to grow, to learn, to have new experiences, and to develop compassion. We receive so much from the people in our lives, both good and bad. It’s important for us to remain open to what we can learn from those around us.
On the flip side of this wish, may you also make a positive change in someone else’s life in the upcoming year. It doesn’t have to be a huge change, just something that brings a little more light into their days. Maybe you can start saying hello to your neighbor whenever you meet at the mailbox, or you can have actual conversations with the people you see at the grocery store each week. Sometimes it really is the smaller acts of simple kindness that make the biggest difference for people.
May you learn a new skill that brings you joy.
It can be so easy to get stuck in routines, or to say you want to try something and then you never do. Don’t let yourself get away with that anymore. Go to a library and pick up books on cooking, or knitting, or woodworking, or how to learn another language. Learn something new by the end of the year so that you can see a difference in yourself by the time 2018 rolls around.
Obviously, it’s also important that you do things to make yourself happy in the coming year. Personally, I’m planning to start taking kickboxing lessons again. It’s been years since the last time I went to a class, but I remember it being the best time I ever had being physically active.
May you grow emotionally in a way that makes you look back at the start of the year and barely recognize yourself.
This wish is a big one. Growth is so important- it keeps us open to new thoughts and opportunities, it helps us adjust to new challenges and ideas, and it gets us closer to becoming the people we want to be. Sometimes that growth can be scary, but in the end it is always a good thing.
May you find something in your life that you feel passionate about, regardless of what other people say.
Passion is something that is precious and all too rare. If you are lucky enough to find something that makes your eyes light up when you talk about it- or even luckier to have that passion line up with a career path- hold onto that passion and follow it, regardless of what anyone else might say or expect of you.
Here’s the deal- this is your life. In the end, you are the one who has to live with your choices and the results. If there is something you want out of life, work for it. Do not let other people determine what you do or how you spend your time. Don’t go into things just because you think it is what you’re supposed to do. Living by other people’s expectations won’t make you happy- only you can really make yourself happy.