Happy New Year 2017!! Our expectations of newness for the year upon us is obvious. As I reflect on writing this post I realized that this time last week I gathered with family and friends to enjoy Christmas Day, while just last night I joined with family and friends watching the Times Square ball descend into a new year. Many events happen in a short time period during the holiday season. But what does it all mean? As I relax with a good cup of coffee on this first morning of the new year, I reread this Marvin comic I
happened upon a couple of years ago. When I think about it, what does make this morning any different from yesterday's? It feels the same, I'm doing the same things, the people around me are the same, the scenery is the same, and yes, the smell is the same. But I am told that this morning is the start of a new year! New beginnings out of the old. New opportunities and adventures await me! Ahhhh..... the promise of newness. But, as reflected in the comic, it doesn't feel new. Does it feel or smell new to you? So, if this new year "smells" like last year should I feel cheated out of that new car smell experience?
One of the reasons for this comic's relevance is that many of us place too high of expectations on ourselves, especially this time of the year. I am not speaking against resolutions in general, but are your resolutions and expectations reasonable? Challenging oneself can be a growth opportunity since through challenges and struggles we learn and grow. But what if you found yourself wanting more once you realized the new year didn't smell any different from the old? What if you realize nothing has changed? For too many of us this is what happens along our journey. We expected a particular day to be one way, and when it wasn't, we were disappointed.
In this new year, when our experiences may not smell as they "should" (according to how I feel they should smell), try to take a moment and look at your situation, the new year, and find a deeper reality. Look beyond yourself to other possibilities. Challenge yourself to learn something new about the world around you. In so doing, I have no doubt that your life's journey will begin to take a new path.
May you all have a happy and blessed New year, filled with many new paths, adventures, and even new smells.