Question for you, in these final hours of this year. Will 2016 go in the trophy cabinet? Will you line it up among other trophies and polish it many times? Will you reminisce over the good game you played and speak fondly of the chips that fell so perfectly in place? Are you sad to see it end?
Will you perhaps relegate 2016 to a black hole? Will you toss it in the darkest part of the attic, never to be seen again? Will you speak of it, only in the most hushed tones, frightened that anything louder might wake the sleeping monster? Are you, right this second, experiencing profound relief that this chapter is finally over?
Well. No matter the context of your last 366 days, the final page of this book is soon to turn. Never to be opened again. And we will embark on the next 365 days with optimism that all that was bad will remain firmly trapped in the year that was. In the same breath, we will also hope that all that was great will somehow sneak past the mean brutes guarding the exit, and come with us to the new year. No such thing as a gate my friend! The turn of the clock will change or maintain nothing. At least not on its own.
So we will vow to be better. To make good our commitments. We will make new lists and pledge our best intentions to fulfilling them. We will drop bad habits and bad friends. We will read more books and watch less television. We will take the stairs and eat more fruit. We will climb that mountain or run that marathon. We will spend less and give to charity. We will…we will…we will.
The lists are great. But with the great lists, come four groups of people:
The Willers – People who will the lists to grow limbs because their own limbs will make no effort. People in this group are extremely optimistic. “It will happen, don’t worry!”
Better than the Willers, are the Tigers – People with the ability to plan and act with speed, but with no stamina for the long haul.
Then finally, we have the loyal followers of tomorrow’s anthem. These ones are slightly better than the Willers. They know they will have to lift a finger at some point, they’d rather just push that starting point ahead, one day at a time. Sometimes they get to it. Sometimes, they don’t.
“Next year I will.” A friend spoke of his plans to eat healthier food.
“You do realize next year is next week?” I ask.
“Yes. Next year is next week and 365 days.” Smart guy. It takes real intelligence to keep coming up with logical arguments for why tomorrow is a better day.
I personally have a little of all three and they do not make a formidable team, I can tell you that. So in my next 365, I’m driving the Doer bus. I might crash a few times. I might have to change a tyre or change course. I might have to dump excess baggage along the way. I may pick up some memorable souvenirs – the kind that come with valuable lessons. I will enjoy the changing scenery. I will laugh. And laugh some more. I will definitely need to refill my optimism and courage many many times. But I’ll keep going. I will learn to view even the roadblocks I encounter as milestones. I will check each one off as another victory in my rearview mirror.
My next 365 begins at the stroke of midnight. And I am revving to go.