Good morning. We are now about one week from Christmas. Many of us are more anxious, more stressed, and having mixed feelings about the current state of the pandemic. Our families know we love them, but to be apart seems so unnatural. Well, focus on this message. Out of love and devotion to our family, this year, we will celebrate a bit differently. We used to have to telephone our distant relatives if we were not able to get home for the holidays. No video, no ZOOM, no Facetime, just a good old fashioned telephone, maybe with a cord, maybe cordless.
One thing we do not want to do is to get ourselves into a bad place, eating too much, drinking too much, and just giving in to the current state of our being. This is going to pass; we will see our loved ones again, provided we haven’t lost a loved one to the pandemic or some other illness. What we can learn from this year is to be resilient, be strong, remember that if we are blessed to have come through this and remained in general overall good health, then we already have jump on the New Year!!!!! Our new motto can be, “I Survived 2020 and COVID-19, Now I’m taking back my life in 2021.”
I revisited one of my favorite books from Napoleon Hill, “Outwitting the Devil.” As I listened, I gained more new introspective insight into the book. Some questions to write down as you write your new plan for the 2021 year may be; 1) Who am I associating with? 2) Do they truly care about me? 3) What positive changes do I want to accomplish in the New Year? 4) What are the pros and cons of limiting my changes? 5) How much do I truly practice self love?
Some of these questions may bring to light some difficult choices. For example, if the people you associate with are negative, drink excessively, do not diligently focus on personal health and well-being, then why would you want to be the average of that sum? If the people around you only want you for their own personal benefit, then maybe you don’t truly need them. This is one positive change that can be easy or very difficult, depending on the relationship. Think of the adult versions of the lead roles in “13 Going on 30.” Jennifer Gardner got a second chance and saw her past as a blessing once she got a glimpse of her future self. Is running with a popular crowd more important than core values?
When you examine your choices and your desires to make change, look at the good, the bad, and yes, the potential ugliness of staying stuck. Can you start small by reading a little more each day? Do you want to change a habit of coming home (if you are still working) and just zoning out on useless television shows? Do you want to make a change that won’t end up in regret at a later time? What potential do YOU have? I didn’t see my potential at a younger age, but when I took the leap and sought higher levels of education; WOW, what I truly missed in myself. Don’t be afraid to grow and be stronger.
I want to wish all of you a very safe, healthy Holiday season. I want you to start now and make those lists. Change old habits, think long and hard about what you really want to do and if you will be able to do it as you grow older. Think long and hard about the compounding effects of what you are doing now on your older body. Do you want active retirement or to just slowly fade away in your favorite recliner, missing all the great things you wanted your younger self to enjoy as you got older? Love yourself and make that the priority, so that you are able to love and care for your family for many years to come.