The Happiness Connection  

Leaping into the new year

Would life be easier in January if we didn’t celebrate Christmas on Dec. 25?

There is so much happening during the holiday period that it is easy to let regular life slide. January can seem overwhelming with catching up on the old and getting started on the new.

Being busy has been a topic of discussion in the work and personal development worlds for some time. Unplugging from technology and taking time for yourself are commonly advised.

I cooked, cleaned, and changed the sheets on the bed numerous times as different people arrived to stay with me over the holiday period. I played more board games than I’ve done in the past several decades and basked in the love and enjoyment of family and friends.

But the experts are right. Being ultra-busy comes at a cost.

I spent much of December hiding things in desk drawers and promising myself I would deal with them in the new year. Well, the new year is here.

They are out of sight and I have lots to do without adding them to my plate.

It’s time to choose. Do I pretend my slate is clean and jump into the new year, or do I open the drawers?

Most years, I let these things stay hidden for months. I’m too full of enthusiasm for new projects and building a spectacular new year to give them more than a passing thought.

This approach has never ended well. At the most inopportune time, the ghost of the year past rises.

Income tax deadlines wait for no woman. Suddenly, it doesn’t matter what I’m in the middle of, I have to give up days of my life to sort out the mess of paperwork and receipts that I chose to ignore in January.

But not this year.

I’ve decided I’m going to get on top of everything from 2019 before I embrace the excitement of my new year’s resolutions.

It’s almost like I need to put my enthusiasm for what lies ahead in a drawer instead of the paperwork that is currently there.

This goes against all my January instincts. I want to look ahead and start new projects, not look back, or in my case look into my stuffed desk drawers.

To appease my desire to embrace the new, I am giving myself a hard deadline.

Even if it means staying up all night, I will not go to bed at the end of the weekend until my accounts are up to date, the Christmas decorations are packed away into my crawl space, and I have completed the paperwork that is clogging up my desk.

I may even take time in the coming week to create some better systems and task dates to stay on top of things this year. If the experience ahead of me is bad enough, I may feel sufficiently motivated to make that happen.

It doesn’t matter whether you are more disciplined than me and go into every new year with the old stuff done. This is a great time to not only set intentions for the future, but to take time to put a bow on the past.

I’ve been thinking how nice it would be if Christmas was at another time of the year, but perhaps the answer is to move the new year back a week or two.

In Reen’s world, the beginning of January is going to be a transition period. I’m going to take time to tidy up the old before jumping into the new.

At least that’s my intention. I’ll let you know how I make out.

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About the Author

Reen Rose is an experienced, informative, and engaging speaker, author, and educator. She has worked for over three decades in the world of education, teaching children and adults in Canada and England.

Research shows that happy people are better leaders, more successful, and healthier than their unhappy counterparts, and yet so many people still believe that happiness is a result of their circumstances.

Happiness is a choice. Reen’s presentations and workshops are designed to help you become robustly happy. This is her term for happiness that can withstand challenge and change.

Reen blends research-based expertise, storytelling, humour, and practical strategies to both inform and inspire. She is a Myers Briggs certified practitioner, a Microsoft Office certified trainer and a qualified and experienced teacher.

Email Reen at [email protected]

Check out her websites at www.ReenRose.com, or www.ModellingHappiness.com

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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