This is the time of year when people start to talk about “making next year better”.
“This year really kicked my butt!” is a common chorus right around now.
In fact, I just went onto Facebook and here are some actual comments that immediately popped up into my newsfeed (I’m not even kidding):
“Have we tried putting 2017 in rice guys?”
“Tried unplugging 2017 at the wall and plugging in again…didn’t work.”
“Have we tried to do mouth to mouth with this deathly thing?”
“Can we just fast forward please?!!!”
“Let’s just throw the whole 2017 away.”
“I don’t even think you can keep it for spare parts.”
This is how a lot of us feel. But the thing is, I hear stuff like this at the end of every year. Everyone is anxious for the year to “just be over already” so they can start fresh next year.
As if January 1st has some actual Reset Button that gets pressed and the old year is flushed down the drain, and Time is rinsed all clean and fresh.
And it might actually feel that way. But the reality is, how you live your life boils down to how you live moment to moment.
Rather than watching the second hand count down to midnight so we can all just say goodbye to 2017 already, can I suggest another way to mark the end of this year that will feel pretty amazing?
You know how sometimes in movies someone is having a flashback of memories. A beautiful song plays and a sequence of scenes are strung together and unfolds in a wordless story within the story. It’s like a highlight reel.
Do that for 2017.
Choose a song or some music you love. Lay down on your bed or sit on a comfy chair with your eyes closed. Take a deep breath, start your music, and in your mind take yourself back to the beginning of the year. Then allow the year’s good memories – however few or insignificant they may seem – to unfold, one by one.
Picture the good times. There were some.
Picture the people you spent time with. Picture the birthdays shared, the candles blown out, the wishes whispered.
Picture your children laughing, the hugs you gave, the hugs you received, the milestones you witnessed.
Picture the friends you helped, the strangers you helped, the strangers who helped you. The smiles exchanged.
The friends who supported you. The friends who listened to you. The friends who never judged you.
The joy your pet gave you. The smile lines at the corner of your father’s eyes. The sound of your mother’s voice on the other end of the phone.
As the music plays, allow more and more characters, experiences, events, non-events, happenings, moments… unfold and replay themselves to the music… in this movie… in your mind.
Sweep through the year and allow whatever nice memories are there to crystallize. One more time. For old times’s sake.
And all the while feel gratitude for every good tiny micro-moment that was part of 2017.
However few, or plenty they may have been.