Out With the Old, In With the New

December 31, 2011

What is it about a pending new year that inspires so much hope and energy? I’ve just spent half an hour making a list of major areas of interest in my life and what activities and projects I want to tackle in each one. Looked at as one entity, it’s a pretty daunting list! But in my current frame of mind (which may last only until the reality of that list sets in), I feel like I can accomplish the whole darn thing. And that’s probably just because the old year is fading, the new year is on the horizon, all shiny and full of possibility, stretching ahead in series of gleaming hours as yet unfilled…surely this will be the year when I’ll accomplish xyz…

Before I get too carried away, however, I need to remember I don’t need to change everything, or expect to tackle my whole list the first couple weeks of the new year. (I say “I”—do you do the same thing?) I need to remember the principle of baby steps and approach all this with an attitude of love (not disgust that I’ve let my life become such a shambles!), acceptance, and patience.

The ending of an old year and the beginning of a new one is a natural time to take stock of one’s life, and maybe plan for some changes. Especially when we’ve just come through the holiday season, when the usual routine gets thrust aside and lives become a little messy. When the holidays are through, as they will be for most of us tomorrow, we’ll be faced with return to “regular” life, and all its attendant responsibilities. Those responsibilities can quickly fill up those shiny new days, leaving little time for the new list of goals I’m making right now. The trick is to blend the old with the new, letting some things fall away, being open to new processes and habits and not giving up altogether when I fall short of my ideal.

Do you get introspective about your life at the new year? What are some of your plans for 2012?

You Might Also Like


  1. Nice post, KJ! I agree that there is something about the beginning of a new year that seems to ask for reflection on what has gone before and what will come.

    I've started on my review of 2011 and plans for 2012, but life managed to majorly sidetrack me. I'll get back into it over the weekend.

    What I'm not seeing is mention of your word-of-the-year..........or next year's word..........

  2. I haven't done as much review as I'd like--but there's not a time limit on reflection! Thankfully. I have a word of the year post in the works, but I haven't actually chosen a word for 2012 yet. How about you?

  3. This year was difficult for me for a variety of reasons, so I am looking forward to a fresh start in 2012! I am always full of optimism for the new year, too, and I hope to accomplish a few things (not just in reading or needlework but some life changes, too--how daunting is that). It is easy to lose sight of goals when the routine kicks in but hopefully there will be some inspiration along the way to keep looking forward! Have a Happy New Year!

  4. I have the same feelings about 2011--it was a tough year, and I'm looking forward to a change in 2012. Hopefully we can all encourage each other to keep working towards our goals while we savor our everyday lives! Hope you have a very happy New Year!

  5. I've been thinking that life is like school. This is just winter term. I think that I am really enjoying being in my 50's.

    Can't wait to learn if you got as much done as you are hoping too ... would love to see your progress report in a few months, Kathy!

    Take care,

    Kathy M.

  6. Kathy--I'm glad to hear the 50s are treating you right--I've heard it's a great decade. I'll try to keep track of what's on my list and what I get done so I can report back. I hope to work steadily this year instead of in fits and starts.