I love the beginning of any New Year, as it comes bearing the gift of a clean slate to imagine "what if?"! I eagerly go shopping for just the right daily Agenda, anticipating the first strokes of my pen to paper, and optimistic that these pages will be filled with meaningful opportunities for work and play. No matter how difficult the last year may have been, our true and most optimistic selves really do want to believe "this year can be different, it can be better!"
What if we can really change the course of our lives by just stubbornly turning on a switch in our brains marked "Hope"? Do we dare to be possibility thinkers, and to admit that the "cup half-full" mentality really is more than just living in "la-la land"? And that allowing ourselves to think this way actually re-wires our brain to be more optimistic and resilient? Can we reflect on this past years hurts, bruises, and hard lessons to see what we can learn, using them as fuel for our journey--but then allow Hope to really shape the future we can imagine, and not our hurts?
Hope comes in many forms; from the simple, everyday glimpses to the extraordinary, out-of-the-blue "wows". Hope is always around us, even if we don't recognize it in our personal lives from day to day. We don't have to look too hard to see it in other people's stories, the excitement of a child, the organizations that are doing amazing things in the world, and we can even marvel right now at natures' renewal through the season--the expectation that yes, spring will come, but there is much going on right now to prepare for the new growth and bursts of life to come. So we are expectant, to one day see what is invisible now. That is Hope!
We are all dreamers at heart, it's part of our human DNA. To dream is to believe that change is possible and that something better, more fulfilling and beautiful can be created from where we are at any given time. Dreaming is envisioning our Hope! You may not feel it right now, and maybe it's just a distant memory, but there is a tiny fire in your soul that just needs a little life breathed into it again. and it's waiting for that moment you notice what's been missing.
I encourage you--me--all of us--to take some time for reflection in the next couple of weeks and to think about dreams and passions left behind, goals that seemed impossible to reach, new things you've wanted to try to do, things you want to try again, relationships that need an infusion of hope, could be big things or small-- and take pen to paper to start writing down and drawing your imaginings about a different and better year with Hope guiding you--not fear, not the past, not failure. I know how easy it is to get tired, worn down, beaten up, fail, make mistakes. That's called being human. We all need to give ourselves some slack, but also a good dose of Possibility Thinking!
Let even that faint flicker of Hope that you're feeling right now inspire action, no matter how small, and watch your momentum not only create more action, but also to inspire others towards change! Who knows what is possible this year for you?
My heart prayer for you today is that no matter what's happened this past year, how disappointed you've been, how many times you've beaten yourself up for not "getting it right"--that you won't give up! And you'll hold stubbornly on to Hope like your life depends on it--because it does! I'm pulling for you, I believe in you and I know there's a lot more in there that the world needs to see. So be Bold and be all in! Love, Carol
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