The new year has arrived! I’m excited to put 2016 behind us and move into 2017. There were good things about 2016 but I am relieved to turn the calendar and start fresh. As I’ve been thinking about the old year/new year concept I’m contemplating how there is a new year ahead of us and yet technically things haven’t changed. Yes, we’ve got a new calendar and new tax year for most of us, but nothing “happened” at midnight on January 1, and yet every year we recognize the change of the calendar and herald it as something big and important.
Some of us do use it as an opportunity for a semi-fresh start. Of course you can have a fresh start anytime you want, but there’s something mentally easier about picking a tangible starting point like a new year or first day of the month to start a transition, change or new beginning. Of course that does allow some of us to put things off until that date, rather than getting started when we should have, and I only can think of a few situations that benefit from procrastinating and most have to do with making purchases.
But back to the original point, there’s a lot that doesn’t change with the stroke of midnight as you enter the new year. You’re still who you were on December 31, you probably still have the same income opportunities, you haven’t gotten rid of your flaws, you haven’t erased your failures, you haven’t gotten a lot older or younger, and you haven’t grown the extra brain/eyes/hands etc. you’ve been asking for all these years. There’s a lot that hasn’t changed, and in many ways that’s a good thing. We don’t really do good if we’re thrust into completely new circumstances. It’s not easy to do a complete life change. We manage if we have to, but it’s a good reason as any as to why the “new” year only ushers in a few changes.
So as much as I hate to say it, pump the breaks on rushing into this new year. Take stock of what you want to keep from the last year, what you’ve learned in the last year and what you’re going to do (honestly) differently in the new year. Make some serious choices and decisions before taking action.