New Year, New Me! NOT.

I managed to live to see 2014. When I was a kid, this was one of those things they only made movies about. The year 2014, when people would be flying cars in the sky and making clones of themselves to do the housework.

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I still don’t think we’re too far off from that. So, happy new year everyone!

Side note/random question: How long is it actually appropriate to say “Happy ‘New’ Year” for before it stops being considered a “new” year? Until February, March…January 30th?

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Anyway, I’ve been seeing A LOT of “new year, new me” posts all over the internet.

That’s a typical thing to see at the start of every new year and if that’s how you’re feeling – great! If you feel like you’re desperate for a little change in your life and you want to use the new year as the starting point for your life makeover, good for you! A new year symbolizes new beginnings in our society. I get it. While I may not be making any of my own “new year, new me” posts, I will say that it’s exciting to see so many people welcoming positive change into their lives and if that slogan or motto works for you, you’ll get no judgement from me. But, just for the sake of challenging you (and because this is my blog and I’ll blog what I want to) I’m going to share my thoughts on the subject.

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Are you really a “new you”? Did you magically turn into an avatar at the stroke of midnight? Because if so, I totally want to see the YouTube video. Did everything you were at 11:59 p.m. spontaneously combust into one startling moment of crystal clear epiphany at 12:00 a.m.? Did this cause your entire internal & psychological makeup to shift into rebirth mode and reincarnate you into a better, more complete and balanced version of yourself? Like…the 2.0 version?

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There’s a new number on the calendar, but is there really anything new about you other than your outlook? Your perception and your attitude toward life and your circumstances has the ability to change the way the whole world looks to you and so many people feel that sense of rebirth around the holidays, but what about the rest of the year? What you felt on New Year’s Day 2014; did you feel that New Year’s Day 2013? Did it last? Do you still feel it on January 5th or 14th? Or did your resolution to be a whole new person just sort of evaporate back into what’s normal, comfortable & effortless for you?

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2014 is not a reset button! You can’t undo everything that was done in years prior. It’s not really a clean slate so why do people interpret it that way? Change is work. The calendar doesn’t start over with you magically becoming a brand new you. It’s something you have to work at intentionally and on a daily – hell, a second by second – basis. I guess I just feel like change can come at any moment in your life; not just on January 1st. So, why wait until the new year to make changes you can make now?

As an example: If a sinner gets saved tonight, he doesn’t wake up the next day perfect. He’s still a sinner. He’s just a sinner that knows he still has work to do and he’s smart enough to let God help him do it. Chances are he’ll still swear & sin just as much as he did before, but he’ll be conscious of it. He’ll try not to. He’ll work on it every single day. And he will get better everyday that he continues to actively work on it. But the moment he forgets to try or forgets to ask God to help him, it’s not too long before he’s back to being just a plain ol’ sinner again.

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That’s how I think of resolutions and all this “new year, new me” stuff. I believe you can be a new you, but it’s not overnight and I don’t think you should forget about everything that happened before, everything you were before. Because you still ARE. They’re not going to disappear the moment the clock strikes twelve. Those things helped shape who you are now and they’ll continue to help shape you into an even better person. The moment you forget them is the moment your growth as an individual stagnates. I’m not saying you should revel in the past to the point that it makes you unable to move on toward to the future. I just think that all of our experiences are important. The good ones and especially the bad ones. What we do with those experiences is even more important than the experience itself. You don’t get wiped off, packaged and put on the shelf brand new when a new year arrives. You just get another chance to be an improved version of yourself.

So maybe a more accurate description would be that you’re not necessarily a “new” you, but a wiser you.

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Unless you’re an avatar. Or a lamp. In that case…carry on.

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