With every new year comes a time of reflection. For some this reflection is new and authentic, for most it is a repeated task and habit that signifies another calendar year. Sometimes it is full of regret, sometimes it is full of ambition. Resolutions for a new year have been a long time tradition of many, but more recently there has been a movement towards picking a word to focus on for the year or finding other nontraditional ways of working towards a better self in the new year. Some choose not to do anything, and some try to do too much. There is a balance and a way for everyone to find motivation and hope for a new year, it just may take a little failure to find.
With reflection also comes a vision. By looking back and analyzing the past year, you may find the things that were enjoyable and make a goal to continue those. You can also identify the things that were difficult, harmful, or unpleasant. When it comes to finding a resolution to address those negative aspects of a previous year, the possibilities are endless. You may have a vision for what you want your year to be, but can’t quite land on a way to get there. It can be overwhelming to try and find just one thing to commit to when there are so many ways of improvement on which to focus. For someone like me who tends to overanalyze and sometimes overcommit, the entire month of January can be wasted just trying to land on the perfect resolution.
This year I am letting and encouraging myself to focus on smaller tasks. Although I would love it if I could go to the gym every morning, or make a home cooked meal every night I just know that those things are not going to happen consistently for the next 365 days. Instead, I am going to try to be willing everyday. Willing to go outside, willing to say yes to God’s plan, willing to say no when it’s not right, willing to meet someone new. This past year was one where old habits were altered by the complete change of pace that we all experienced in our day to day lives. Instead of trying to fix one of the many bad habits I formed in 2020, I am going to focus on being willing. With this word in mind, I hope that my days will be filled with more joy and my mind will have more peace. I hope that I will find myself in new places and relationships and also enjoying the slower pace I grew to love in many ways. I hope that I do not get overwhelmed with the idea of being willing, but am able to adopt it into my everyday thoughts and actions.
For the Sycamoreans, this new year is different from the last. The break of the holidays was refreshing and enjoyed, but returning back to the lives we have built here in Harrisburg does not come without challenges. Adjusting to young adulthood, as we all are no matter at what stage, can be strange and hard sometimes. The hype of the new year and excitement for a clean slate can be confusing when you jump back into the same routine as the previous few months. Although the coming of a new year signals a time of transition, the Sycamoreans still have quite a few months left in this year of service and time in Harrisburg. I think that this is almost a point of opportunity though. With the concept of a new start in the year of 2021, we have the opportunity to change our work habits, our home routine, or to improve our functionality in some way before the conclusion of our time here. The state of our country and world is still alarming and brings many challenges, but I hope that with the consistency and return to something familiar we are able to continue to grow through these next few months and be willing to accept the change that may come.